State / Territory Benefits - Alaska
Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV)
Health and Insurance Benefits
Parks and Recreation
Veterans Administration (VA) Medical Facilities
Summary: Alaska offers special benefits for its military Service members and Veterans. These benefits include the Permanent Dividend Fund (PFD), Military Credit toward State Retirement, Property Tax Exemptions, State Employment Preferences, Education and Tuition Assistance, Veterans Land Discount/Purchase Preference, Vehicle Tags, as well as Hunting and Fishing License privileges. Eligibility for some benefits may depend on residency, military component and Veteran disability status.
State Benefit Highlights and Eligibility
State Tax Advantage: Alaska has no state income tax and no state sales tax in most locations. However, 62 municipalities impose a sales tax that can range up to 7.5%. Typical sales tax rates are from 2% - 5%.
Retirement Income: Retirement Income is not taxed by the State of Alaska.
Property Tax Exemptions: A qualified disabled Veteran is exempt from taxation on the first $150,000.00 of assessed value of the real property they own and occupy as their primary residence and permanent place of abode. Contact the local municipal tax assessor's office by March 15 for exemption for current year.
Eligibility: A disabled Veteran who, 1) separated under condition other than dishonorable from the military service of the United States whose disability was incurred or aggravated in the line of duty and is rated as 50 percent or more by the military service or the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or, 2) served in the Alaska Territorial Guard, is a resident of the state, and disability is rated as 50 percent or more and was incurred or aggravated in the line of duty while serving in the Alaska Territorial Guard; evidence of the disability rating must be provided [AK code Sec. 29.45.030]
Alaska Tuition Assistance: The Alaska Adjutant General may authorize payment of up to 100 percent of the cost of tuition and required fees at an Alaska educational, vocational or technical training school.
Eligibility: Alaska National Guard or Alaska Naval Militia member that participates satisfactorily in unit training activities and is a student in "good standing" (enrolled, attending and meeting the minimum success requirements for completion of the program or class) [Alaska Code Sec. 26.05.296]
Free Tuition for Spouses or Dependents: Waiver of undergraduate tuition and fees at a state supported educational institution physically located within Alaska.
Eligibility: The Spouse or dependent of an armed services member who died in the line of duty or who died as a result of injuries sustained while in the line of duty or who was listed by the Department of Defense as a Prisoner of War or Missing in Action. Students must be in and maintain good standing within a state supported educational facility in Alaska.
Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children: It is the purpose of this compact to remove barriers to educational success imposed on children of military Families because of frequent moves and deployment of their parents by:
- Facilitating the timely enrollment of children of military Families and ensuring that they are not placed at a disadvantage due to difficulty in the transfer of educational records from the previous school district or variations in entrance or age requirements.
- Facilitating the student placement process through which children of military Families are not disadvantaged by variations in attendance requirements, scheduling, sequencing, grading, course content or assessment. Facilitating the qualification and eligibility for enrollment, educational programs, and participation in extracurricular academic, athletic and social activities.
- Facilitating the on-time graduation of children of military Families.
- Providing for the promulgation and enforcement of administrative rules implementing the provisions of this compact.
- Providing for the uniform collection and sharing of information between and among member states, schools and military Families under this compact.
- Promoting coordination between this compact and other compacts affecting military children.
- Promoting flexibility and cooperation between the educational system, parents and the student in order to achieve educational success for the student.
Primart Point of Contact
Marcy Herman, Legislative Liaison
P.O. Box 110500 Juneau, AK 99811-0500
Military Credit toward State Retirement:
--Public Employees' Retirement System (PERS) credit: Qualified individuals may be eligible to receive up to five years of PERS credit for active military service.
Eligibility: Honorably discharged Service members of the U.S, Armed Forces that are vested in the PERS; surviving Spouses of Service members may also be eligible. Members first hired under the PERS after 30 June 1986 that retired from regular service and are eligible for a federal benefit for the same military service are NOT eligible. Retired National Guard and Reserve unit members may be eligible to claim active military service even though they are eligible for a federal benefit for the same military service.
--National Guard and Naval Militia Retirement System (NGNMRS): Upon separation from the Alaska National Guard or Naval Militia qualifying individuals may receive a small benefit payment.
Eligibility: 20 years of service in the Alaska National Guard, National Guard of any other state, Active military service, or Reserve military service combined; at least five years must have been satisfactory service in the Alaska National Guard unless discharge was involuntary and for reasons other than misconduct. Information can be obtained from the administrative section of the Alaska National Guard
State Employment Hiring Preference:
--Veterans and Prisoners of War: Veterans are eligible for a state employment hiring preference. In a numerical rating system, Veterans will receive points equal to five percent of the total points available from the assessment device(s) added to their score; for disabled Veterans or former prisoners of war, points equal to 10 percent of the total points available from the assessment device(s) will be awarded. If numerical ratings are NOT used, a Veteran will be given consideration and a disabled Veteran or prisoner of war will be given an opportunity to interview.
Eligibility: An honorably discharged Veteran with 181 days or more of active service in the armed forces of the United States with service, 1) between 27 June 1950 and 14 October 1976 or, 2) for which a campaign badge, expedition medal, Purple Heart, award or decoration for heroism or gallantry in action was awarded or, 3) of 181 days or more in the Alaska Territorial Guard; disabled Veteran entitled to compensation by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, honorably discharged or released from active duty due to a service-connected disability or disabled in the line of duty while serving in the Alaska Territorial Guard; prisoner of war [Alaska Code 39.25.159]
--Alaska National Guard: Members of the Alaska National Guard are eligible for a state employment hiring preference. In a numerical rating system, National Guard members will receive points equal to five percent of the total points available from the assessment device(s) added to their score. If numerical ratings are NOT used, National Guard members will be given consideration (entire application will be reviewed).
Eligibility: A presently serving member of the Alaska National Guard with at least eight years of service in the Alaska National Guard
Application and job market information can be found at: http://www.jobs.state.ak.us/veterans/index.html
Employment Assistance: State employee receives 15 days paid military leave per year.
Eligibility: National Guard and Reserve member
Veterans Employment Services: The Veterans Services Section of the Employment Security Division of the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development promotes employment, economic stability, and growth by operating a no-fee labor exchange that meets the needs of employers, job seekers, and Veterans. This service provides job placement, job matching and referral, vocational counseling and job search assistance.
Affirmative Action Plan: The State of Alaska 1998 Affirmative Action Plan affords all present and prospective state employees in the executive branch an equal opportunity for employment regardless of their Veteran status - among many other factors. The state will ensure there are no impermissible or artificial barriers for Veterans or disabled Veterans to cross in applying for state jobs, provide-on-the-job training and assistance in locating qualified disabled applicants, recruit and employ qualified person with disabilities and Vietnam era vets for state jobs and sets up an informal complaint procedure. The plan is administered by the Office of Equal Employment Opportunity in Division of Personnel.
Unemployment Insurance: Alaska's Unemployment Insurance (UI) Program is dedicated to providing unemployed workers fast and accurate payment of UI benefits. With the seasonal nature of much of the state's workforce and Alaska's vast remoteness, unemployment insurance benefits serve not only to bridge the economic gap for the individual worker, but also as a stabilizing influence on local economies.
Whether filing for benefits online or by telephone, you will be asked to provide basic information about yourself such as:
- Social security number
- Name, address, and telephone number of your last employer
- Your last day worked
- Reason for leaving the job
- Wages earned during the last week of employment
- If you are not a US citizen or national, you will need your Alien Registration Number, expiration date and document type
You can file an initial claim for unemployment benefits two ways, online or calling a UI Claim Center at 1-888-252-2557. To file online login to myalaska.state.ak.us and click on "Unemployment Insurance Benefits".
Special Vehicle License Plates
To honor those who have served or are serving with the United States Armed Forces, Alaska offers special license plates for no charge to those qualifying for Prisoner of War (POW), Pearl Harbor Survivor, Purple Heart or Gold Star Family. There is a $30 per plate fee charged at initial application or replacement for Veteran plates and National Guard plates.
Veteran Plate: License plate with specified branch of military service with the word 'Veteran'; or a Unit Designator Personalized Veteran Plate with approved military unit organizations insignia. Fee is $30.
Eligibility: Proof that Veteran has served or is currently serving with a branch of the U.S. Armed Forces. Acceptable proof includes DD Form 214, a letter of Verification from the VA, Military ID card or other comparable proof of service.
National Guard Distinctive Plate: National Guard members are eligible for distinctive plates for a fee of $30. Members must solely or jointly own the vehicle that displays the plates.
Eligibility: Active Member of Alaska National Guard with proof of service (NG ID card). The plates may only be issued to a motor vehicle owned solely or jointly by the active member of the National Guard.
Purple Heart Plate: Recipients of the Purple Heart Award are entitled to one set of plates for use on a motor vehicle. There is no fee for the plate.
Eligibility: Applicants must prove receipt of the Purple Heart Award by providing to DMV official documentation such as DD 214 or a copy of the orders awarding the medal.
Pearl Harbor Plate: No charge for Veteran who participated in Pearl Harbor.
Eligibility: Proof of participation in Pearl Harbor.
Gold Star Family Plate: Gold Star plates are eligible to the Spouse, parent, guardian, sibling or dependent of a member of the U.S. Armed Forces killed in the line of duty. There is no fee for the plate.
Eligibility: Applicant must submit a Report of Casualty (DD Form 1300) to be eligible. If the applicant is not listed on the Form 1300, further proof must be submitted to connect the applicant to the fallen Service member.
Prisoner of War: Each eligible applicant may obtain one set of POW plates, free of charge, for display on a non-commercial vehicle.
Eligibility: Applicants must provide written verification from the United States Department of Veteran's Affairs that they were POWs.
Disabled Veteran With Parking Privileges Free Disabled Veteran Parking Permit and Disabled Veteran plates with the wheelchair logo with proof of a service related disability and documentation of a mobility impairment
Eligibility: Applicant must provide an Application for Disabled Parking completed by their Alaska licensed physician plus a certificate issued by an agency of the U.S. federal government, such as the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, proving a service related disability.
Disabled Veteran Without Parking Privileges: Free Disabled Veteran plates without the wheelchair logo to those with a service related disability that don't meet the criteria for parking privileges
Eligibility: Applicant must provide certification from the U.S. government that they have a 50% or greater service related disability
Disabled Veteran Vehicle Registration: A disabled Veteran that qualifies for disabled Veteran plates can register one vehicle with special plates free of Motor Vehicle Registration Taxes or registration fees. Subsequent plates are available with payment of full fees.
Medical Benefits: Full medical
Eligibility: National Guard Service member in line-of-duty on State Active Duty
Injury: Full Worker's Compensation
Eligibility: National Guard State Active Duty
Death Gratuity: The surviving Spouse of a qualified Veteran, upon application, will receive a death gratuity in the amount of $750.00 from the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. If there is no surviving Spouse the gratuity will be paid to the personal representative of the Veteran.
Eligibility: Veteran who was a resident of the state of Alaska at the time of death and, 1)burial occurred in Alaska on or after 13 May 1984; 2) death occurred on or after 19 September 1990; 3) received an honorable discharge or general discharge under honorable conditions; 4) was a resident of Alaska for at least one year prior to entry into the military service, and returned to the state as a resident within one year after retiring from military service with the intention of remaining, OR was a resident for at least one year prior to death; 5) served in the Alaska Territorial Guard, Alaska Army or Air National Guard, Alaska Naval Militia, a Reserve unit of the U.S. Armed Forces in Alaska (if the Reserve unit required a minimum of one weekend of duty per month and 15 consecutive days of active duty training each year for at least three years).
Hunting and Fishing Privileges:
--Active duty military; Alaska National Guard and Alaska Military Reserves: Once military residency requirements, of being stationed in the state for at least 12 consecutive months, are met, active duty military may purchase licenses at the resident rate. Nonresident military license rates must be paid when stationed in Alaska for less than 12 months before date applying for license.
--Resident Disabled Veteran: Resident hunting and sport fishing licenses are available at no charge.
Eligibility: Veteran must meet the residency definitions, be honorably discharged from military service, eligible for a loan under AS 18.56.101, and certified by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs as having a 50 percent or greater service-connected disability. Or, Veteran must have served in the Alaska Territorial Guard, be eligible for a loan under AS 18.56.101 and incurred a 50% or greater disability while serving in the Alaska Territorial Guard. Click here for Application.
State Veteran Loans: The Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) administers the Veterans Mortgage Program that offers financing for qualified Veterans at lower interest rates.
Eligibility: Qualified Veterans may be retired or active duty personnel. A Veteran must apply to AHFC within 25 years of his/her date of discharge from "active duty service."(Active duty service is full-time duty, other than for training.) Active duty service in the Armed Forces, US Public Health Service, NOAA or service as a cadet at the US Military, Air Force, Coast Guard, or Naval Academy may qualify.
Permanent Fund Dividend (PFD): Offered to State of Alaska residents. The amount of the 2012 dividend is $900 per person.
Eligibility: A resident of the State of Alaska for the entire calendar year preceding the date you apply for the dividend and intend to remain an Alaska resident indefinitely at the time you apply.
Recording Veterans Report of Separation Form: A Veteran may record, without fee, the original or a certified copy of his or her Armed Forces Report of Separation (DD-214 Form, NGB Form 22 or DA Form 1569) at any State Recorder's office of the Department of Natural Resources.
Eligibility: Military Veteran
Veterans Land Discount/Purchase Preference: The Veterans Land Discount program allows certain Veterans up to a 25% discount on the purchase price of state residential/recreational land. The discount may be used only once during the Veteran's lifetime and may not be used in conjunction with the Veterans preference. Under the Veterans Land Sale Preference, before offering to the general public any unoccupied residential land by auction, a Veteran has the exclusive opportunity to purchase the land at a restricted sale at fair appraised market value. Parcels that are offered under this preference must be five acres or less, classified as settlement land and zoned for residential use only.
Eligibility: Military Veteran
Disabled Veteran's State Camping Pass: An eligible Disabled Alaskan Veterans (DAV) has the right to receive one Alaska State Park Camping Pass free of charge. The DAV Camping Pass, which is valid in all developed Alaska State Park campgrounds, is good for two years.
Eligibility: To receive a free DAV camping pass, an eligible disabled Veteran must present proof of a service connected disability and Alaska residency at either the Anchorage or Fairbanks DNR Public Information Centers. Proof of residency can be in the form of an Alaskan Driver's License, Alaska Sport Fishing License, Alaska Voter's Registration Card, or other documentation suitable to the department that proves Alaska residency. Evidence of service connected disability can be provided by presenting
- a Veteran's Administration Patient Data Card (red, white, and blue) imprinted with "service connected disability" under the photo identification, or
- a current year letter from the US Department of Veterans Affairs, which states the person has a service-connected disability and is signed by the Veteran Service Officer.
Alaska Marine Highway Pass: A one-year pass on the ferries of the Alaska Marine Highway is available for disabled Veterans. This pass entitles the disabled passenger and an attendant (if required by a physician) to travel at 50% of the regular passenger fare, between Alaska ports only, on all vessels, year-round. For more information, visit the Alaska Marine Highway System website.
Eligibility: Veterans who have a service-related disability.
Birthday Cards from the Governor: Birthday greetings from the Governor are available to Veterans 80 years and older. Veterans or Family or friends of Veterans should contact the governor's office at least four weeks in advance and supply the name and address of the person to receive the card and appropriate proof of age. Send request to: Constituent Relations, Governor Office, P.O. Box 110001, Juneau, AK 99811, (907) 465-3500; or fax request to: Fax 465- 3532; or email request to: firstname.lastname@example.org
High School Diplomas for World War II Veterans: Operation Recognition, a nation-wide effort, recognizes that many World War II Veterans went off to war and never returned to high school to receive a diploma. In Alaska, the Department of Education and Early Development may award diplomas to World War II vets living in Alaska, including Alaska Territorial Guard members, who served during the period of 7 August 1940 to 25 July 1947 and were honorably discharged or died in active service or were released from active duty because of a service-related disability. A family member may apply on behalf of a Veteran who is deceased or incapacitated. Even ex-GIs with a Graduation Equivalency Diploma are eligible to apply.
Military and Veterans Memorial Landmark Property: The Military and Veterans Landmark Property Program formally recognize memorials around the state built to honor the military and Veterans of the armed forces. Information about the memorials is important to understanding the sacrifices made by Veterans in Alaska and America, the role of the military, and the history of our nation's wars.
Wartime Letters - The Legacy Project: The Legacy Project is a unique and meaningful way to honor all Veterans by preserving letters written by Soldiers on the front and letters written to them from home. A national, volunteer, non-profit agency known as the Legacy Project began collecting letters from any American wartime period to preserve these treasured documents and therefore heighten appreciation of them.
Alaska Veterans Memorial Museum: The Alaska Veterans Memorial Museum is planned with a focus on honoring our nation's Veterans for the sacrifices they made to defend America's freedom, "They Shall Not Be Forgotten ".
Alaska Veterans & Pioneers Homes: The Alaska Veterans and Pioneers Home in Palmer strives to assist older Alaskans to have the highest quality of life by providing assisted living in a safe home setting which promotes independence, positive relationships, meaningful activities and physical, emotional and spiritual growth. Seventy-five percent of the 79 beds in the home are designated for Veterans. Qualifying Veterans are eligible for a per diem from the VA to help offset costs of their care.
Eligibility: Honorably separated Veterans, 65 or older who require assisted living care are eligible for admission. Veteran must have resided in Alaska for 1 year or more prior to application. Admission forms.
Alaska Air National Guard
United States Army Reserve (USAR)
Veterans Health Administration
VA Health Care System
Anchorage: Alaska VA Healthcare System, 1201 North Muldoon Rd, 907-257-4700 / 888-353-7574
Juneau: Juneau VA Outreach Clinic, 709 West 9th St, Suite 150, 907-896-4300 / Fax: 907-796-4301
Community Based Outpatient Clinic
Fort Wainwright: Fairbanks VA Community Based Outpatient Clinic, Bassett Army Community Hospital, Bldg 4076, Neeley Rd, Rm 1J-101, 907-361-6370 / Fax: 907-353-6372
Kenai: Kenai VA Community Based Outpatient Clinic, 11312 Kenai Spur Highway, #39, 907-395-4100 / Fax: 907-283-4236
Wasilla: Mat-Su VA Community Based Outpatient Clinic, 865 N. Seward Meridian Parkway, Suite 105, 907-631-3100 / Fax: 907-631-3101
Anchorage: Anchorage Vet Center, 4400 Business Park Blvd, Suite B-34, 907-563-6966 / 877-927-8387/ Fax: 907-561-7183
Fairbanks: Fairbanks Vet Center, 540 4th Ave, Suite 100, 907-456-4238 / 877-927-8387 / Fax: 907-456-0475
Soldotna: Kenai Vet Center Outstation, 43299 Kalifornsky Beach Rd, Suite 4, 907-260-7640 / 877-927-8387 / Fax: 907-260-7642
Wasilla: Wasilla Vet Center, 851 E. West Point Dr, Suite 102, 907-376-4318 / 877-927-8387 / Fax: 907-373-1883
Veterans Benefits Administration
Anchorage: Anchorage Regional Office, 1201 North Muldoon Rd, 800-827-1000
Anchorage: Eielson Air Force Base
Anchorage: Elmendorf Air Force Base
Anchorage: Fort Richardson
Anchorage: Fort Wainwright
Anchorage: Ketchika Coast Guard
Anchorage: Kodiak Coast Guard
Anchorage: Sitka Coast Guard
National Cemetery Administration
Fort Richardson: Fort Richardson National Cemetery, Bldg 58-512 Davis Hwy, 907-384-7075 / Fax: 907-384-7111
Sitka: Sitka National Cemetery, 803 Sawmill Creek Rd, 907-384-7075 / Fax; 907-384-7111
Document Review Date: 31 October 2013