State / Territory Benefits - New York

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 State Taxes
Education Benefits
Employment Benefits
Unemployment Benefits
Division of Motor Vehicles Benefits
Health Insurance Benefits
Parks & Recreation Benefits
Miscellaneous Benefits
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Summary: New York offers special benefits for its military Service members and Veterans including Property Tax Exemptions, New York National Guard Tuition Program, Military Service Recognition Scholarship, Compensation for State Active Duty, Employment Assistance, Civil Service Preference, Special Vehicle License Plates, as well as Hunting, Fishing license and State Park privileges. Eligibility for some benefits may depend on residency, military component, and Veteran disability status.

State Benefit Highlights and Eligibility

State Taxes:

State Tax Advantage: Retired military pay not subject to state income tax.

  • If you are a New York State resident and your permanent home (domicile) was in New York State when you entered the military but you were assigned to duty outside the state, you are still a New York State resident. Your military pay is subject to New York State income tax to the same extent it is subject to federal income tax.
  • If your permanent home (domicile) was in New York State when you entered the military but you meet the conditions for nonresident status, your military pay is not subject to New York State income tax.
  • If your permanent home was not New York State when you entered the military but you were assigned to duty in New York State, you do not become a New York State resident even if you have a permanent place of abode here. You are a nonresident and your military pay is not subject to New York State income tax.

If you are a nonresident, other income that you receive from New York State sources (including your Spouse's income) may be subject to tax.  

These rules apply for both New York City and Yonkers income tax purposes.

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Combat Zone Pay: Military pay received for active service as a member of the armed services of the United States in an area designated as a combat zone is exempt from New York State, New York City and Yonkers taxes. Service members are entitled to a New York subtraction modification in computing their New York adjusted gross income for the amount of combat pay included in their federal adjusted gross income.

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Military Disability Retired Pay: Retirees who entered the military before September 24, 1975, and members receiving disability retirements based on combat injuries or who could receive disability payments from the VA are covered by laws giving disability broad exemption from federal income tax. Most military retired pay based on service-related disabilities also is free from federal income tax, but there is no guarantee of total protection.

VA Disability Dependency and Indemnity Compensation: VA benefits are not taxable because they generally are for disabilities and are not subject to federal or state taxes.

Military SBP/RCSBP/RSFPP: Pension payments received by retired military personnel's beneficiaries are totally exempt from New York State, New York City, and Yonkers income taxes.

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Military Pensions: Pension payments received by retired military personnel or their beneficiaries are totally exempt from New York State, New York City, and Yonkers income taxes.

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Property Tax Exemption: There are three different property tax exemptions available to Veterans who have served in the U. S. Armed Forces.

Obtaining a Veterans' exemption is not automatic - if you're an eligible Veteran, you must submit the initial exemption application form to your assessor. The deadline in most communities is March 1 - please confirm the date with your assessor.

Whichever exemption a Veteran chooses, it will apply only to county, city, town, and village taxes; it does not apply to special district taxes. Beginning in 2014, school districts also have the option to offer the alternative Veterans' exemption.

You can only receive one of the three exemptions listed below.

  • Alternative Veterans' Exemption
    • Available only on residential property of a Veteran who has served during a designated time of war, or who has received an expeditionary medal
    • Currently available in over 95 percent of the county, city, town, and village taxing jurisdictions across the state. The remainder of these jurisdictions may choose to offer this exemption in the future. School districts also have the option to offer this exemption
    • Veteran applicants should check with the assessor or clerk in the municipalities in which they respectively reside to see whether the alternative Veterans' exemption is offered
    • Authorized by Real Property Tax Law, Section 458-a
  • Cold War Veterans' Exemption
    • Available only on residential property of a Veteran who served during the Cold War period
    • Counties, cities, towns, and villages have the option to offer this exemption to qualified Veterans
    • Check with your assessor or clerk to see whether the Cold war Veterans' exemption is offered
    • Authorized by Real Property Tax Law, Section 458-b
  • Eligible Funds Exemption
    • Provides a partial exemption
    • Applies to property that a Veteran or certain other designated person purchases. Such owners must purchase the property with pension, bonus or insurance monies

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Education Benefits:

Recruitment Incentive and Retention Program (RIRP): The Recruitment Incentive and Retention Program (RIRP) is a New York State program designed to recruit and retain quality members for the Army National Guard. This competitive program will pay the cost of tuition up to a maximum of $4,350 per calendar year for eligible qualified applicants.
Eligibility:
The following are basic RIRP eligibility requirements:
(for complete eligibility requirements, see DMNA Regulation 621-1)

  • Be in good standing in the National Guard (attend or make-up all drills and annual training);
  • Be accepted and enrolled in college in an undergraduate, degree-producing program for a minimum of six (6) credit hours per semester or four (4) credit hours per quarter;
  • Maintain eligibility for the entire period of your application;
  • Be a resident of the State of New York for a period of 186 days prior to using the program for the first time and 186 days per year, excluding Active Duty periods.

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Veterans Tuition Awards: Veterans Tuition Awards (VTA) are awards for full-time study and part-time study for eligible Veterans matriculated in an approved program at an undergraduate or graduate degree-granting institution or in an approved vocational training program in New York State.

For full-time study, a recipient shall receive an award of up to the full cost of undergraduate tuition for New York state residents at the State University of New York, or actual tuition charged, whichever is less. Full-time study is defined as twelve or more credits per semester (or the equivalent) at a degree-granting institution, or twenty-four or more hours per week in a vocational training program. For part-time study, awards will be prorated by credit hour. Part-time study is defined as at least three but fewer than twelve credits per semester (or the equivalent) at a degree-granting institution, or six to twenty-three hours per week in a vocational training program.

For the 2014 - 2015 academic years, the maximum annual full-time award is set at $6,195 or tuition, whichever is less. For part-time study the initial award figure is estimated at the cost of full-time attendance. Upon certification of the student's part-time status the award is recalculated according to the number of credits certified and the student's actual part-time tuition liability. If a Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) award is also received for full time study only, the combined academic year awards cannot exceed tuition. Thus, the TAP award may be reduced accordingly.
Eligibility: Eligible students are those who are New York State residents discharged under honorable conditions from the U.S. Armed forces and who are:

  • Vietnam Veterans who served in Indochina between February 28, 1961 and May 7, 1975.
  • Persian Gulf Veterans who served in the Persian Gulf on or after August 2, 1990.
  • Afghanistan Veterans who served in Afghanistan during hostilities on or after September 11, 2001.
  • Veterans of the armed forces of the United States who served in hostilities that occurred after February 28, 1961 as evidenced by receipt of an Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Navy Expeditionary Medal or a Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal.

Veteran must also:

  • Establish eligibility by applying to HESC.
  • Be New York State residents.
  • Be US Citizens or eligible noncitizens.
  • Be matriculated full or part- time at an undergraduate or graduate degree-granting institution in New York State or in an approved vocational training program in New York State.
  • Have applied for the Tuition Assistance Program for full-time undergraduate or graduate study.
  • Have graduated from high school in the United States, earned a GED, or passed a federally approved "Ability to Benefit" test as defined by the Commissioner of the State Education Department.
  • Meet good academic standing requirements.
  • Be charged at least $200 tuition per year.
  • Not be in default on a federal or State made student loan or on any repayment of state award.

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Military Enhanced Recognition Incentive and Tribute (MERIT) Scholarship (also known as Military Service Recognition Scholarship): Provides financial aid to Veterans, Children, Spouses, and financial dependents of members of the U.S. Armed Forces who while NYS residents, died or became severely and permanently disabled while engaged in hostilities or training for hostilities. This award covers up to four years of full-time undergraduate study (or five years in an approved five year bachelor's degree program) and includes the following: 

  • Tuition: An amount equal to your actual tuition or the State University of New York's (SUNY) in-state tuition, whichever is less.
  • Non-tuition Costs: These include room and board and allowances for books, supplies and transportation up to the average cost at SUNY Colleges. The Commissioner of Education sets the non-tuition cost allowances each year.
  • Residence: A student living on campus will receive a higher room and board allowance than a commuter student. If housing is not available for students on campus they will receive the same allowance as students living on campus.

The maximum total annual award for students living on campus for the 2014-15 academic year is $21,892; the maximum total annual award for commuter students for the 2014-15 academic year is $14,602. Note: Students choosing to live off campus when housing is available will be paid at the lower commuter rate.

Eligibility: Veterans, Children, Spouses and financial dependents of members of the US Armed Forces, who while NYS residents, on or after August 2, 1990,

  • Died or became 100% severely and permanently disabled as a result of injury or illness suffered or incurred; or are classified as missing in action in a combat theater or combat zone of operations; or who died as a result of injuries incurred in these designated areas; OR
  • Died or became 100% severely and permanently disabled as result of injury or illness suffered or incurred during military training operations in preparation for duty in a combat theater or combat zone of operations. A member of the armed forces of the United States or state organized militia who provided eligible military service on or after August 2, 1990 is considered 100% severely and permanently disabled when a doctor of medicine or osteopathy, licensed to practice in a state, has determined that such person is unable to engage in any occupation for remuneration or profit due to a physical or mental impairment.

MERIT is also available to members of the armed forces of the United States or state organized militia who provided eligible military service at any time on or after August 2, 1990 while New York State residents, and who became 100% severely and permanently disabled as a result of injury or illness suffered or incurred:

  • in a combat theater or combat zone; OR
  • during military training operations in preparation for duty in a combat theater or combat zone of operations.

Students must:

  • Study at an approved postsecondary institution in New York State.
  • Have graduated from high school in the United States, or have a high school equivalency diploma earned through passing the Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC), formally known as the GED, or passed a federally approved "Ability to Benefit" test as defined by the Commissioner of the State Education Department.
  • Be enrolled as a full-time student taking 12 or more credits per semester.
  • Be matriculated in an approved program of study
  • Be in good academic standing.
  • Not be in default on any State or federal student loan or on any repayment of state awards.

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NYS Regents Awards for Children of Deceased and Disabled Veterans: Regents Awards for Children of Deceased and Disabled Veterans were created to provide financial aid to students whose parent(s) served in the U.S. Armed Forces during specified times of national emergency. It provides $450 per year.
Eligibility: Students whose parent(s) served in the U.S. Armed Forces during specified periods of war or national emergency and, as a result of service, either died, suffered a 40% or more disability, was classified as missing in action, or was a prisoner of war. The Veteran must currently be a New York State resident or have been a New York State resident at the time of death. Students whose parent(s) was the recipient of the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Navy Expeditionary Medal, or the Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal for participation in operations in Lebanon, Grenada, or Panama are also eligible.

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Military Residency Waiver: New York State residency eligibility requirement for recipients of awards administered by Higher Education Services Corporation (HESC) is waived for a member, or the Spouse or dependent of a member, of the armed forces of the United States on full-time active duty and stationed in this state.

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Operation Recognition: allows certain Veterans to earn high school diplomas if they left school without graduating. Section 305 of the NYS Education Law created Operation Recognition to recognize the dedication and sacrifice of WWII, Korea, and Vietnam Veterans who left school before graduation by awarding them a high school diploma.
Eligibility:
To be eligible, an applicant must meet the following requirements:

  1. Be a New York State resident.
  2. Attended a New York State school before entering military service.
  3. Engaged in active duty service for at least one day during one of the following wartime periods:
    1. World War II: December 7, 1941 - December 31, 1946
    2. Korea: June 27, 1950 - January 31, 1955
    3. Vietnam: May 1, 1961 - April 30, 1975
  4. Received a satisfactory discharge from military service.

Deceased Veterans can receive a diploma. The Child or Spouse of a deceased Veteran who met the criteria listed above may apply and accept a posthumous diploma on the Veteran's behalf.

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Employment Benefits:

Employment Assistance: Section 242 of the New York State Military Law provides 30 calendar days or 22 workdays of military leave with full pay in any calendar year or continuous period of ordered duty that spans more than one calendar year. In addition, the State provides continuation of Family coverage under the State's health insurance plan, at no cost to the enrollee, for the period of federally ordered military duty or 12 months minus the period of time the employee is in full pay status. Under the provisions of the " Supplemental Military Leave" agreement, after leave at full pay benefits provided under Section 242 of the Military Law are exhausted, eligible employees will receive the difference between their regular state salary and their regular military pay for the time period covered by the agreement.
Eligibility:
State employees who are called up for active duty in the Reserves or National Guard.

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Civil Service Preference: The State Constitution requires that examinations for appointment or promotion in State service be competitive, so far as practicable. At the same time, it contains a significant exception to the strict rule of competition by giving additional credits in competitive examinations to war Veterans. Disabled Veterans receive 10 points additional credit on their examination scores in open-competitive examinations and five points in promotion examinations. Non-disabled Veterans are granted five points in open-competitive examinations and two and one-half points in promotion examinations. In every case, however, the Veteran must attain a passing mark on an examination before additional credits may be added to his/her score. The additional credits may not be applied to raise a failing grade to a passing one.
Eligibility:
Veterans eligible for the credits are those who:

  • were members of the Armed Forces of the United States;
  • served on active duty for other than training purposes in time of war;
  • were discharged honorably, released under honorable circumstances, or will be honorably discharged or released under honorable circumstances at the time of appointment; and
  • are residents of New York State at the time of application for appointment, promotion or retention, as the case may be.

A Veteran who is disabled is defined as someone who meets the above service criteria and is certified by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs [formerly known as the Veterans Administration] as having a disability rated at ten percent or more which was incurred while serving in the United States Armed Forces in time of war. The disability must be in existence and the disabled Veteran must be receiving payment from the Department of Veterans Affairs for such disability at the time of application for appointment or retention.

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Employment and Training: As guaranteed by the New York State Veterans Bill of Rights for Employments Services, Veterans are entitled to priority service at all New York State Department of Labor offices in referrals to jobs, as well as for employment counseling, vocational testing and other services. Veterans receive special priority for all services and training funded by the Job Training Partnership Act.
Eligibility:
A Veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces and their eligible Spouses.

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Veterans with Disabilities Employment Program (55-c): Section 55-c of the New York State Civil Service Law authorizes 500 positions to be filled with qualified wartime Veterans with disabilities. Applicants must meet the minimum qualifications for the position but are not required to take an examination. Eligible Veterans are not guaranteed state employment and are not placed on a hiring list.
Eligibility: Any Veteran who has received the Purple Heart medal or who has a disability rating assigned by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) of at least 20 percent is automatically eligible. Veterans with less than a 20 percent disability rating from the VA may be eligible for the 55-c program. These Veterans must have a disability certified by the Employee Health Service (EHS) of the Department of Civil Service. A qualifying disability does not need to be service connected.

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Unemployment Compensation:

Unemployment Insurance: Unemployment Insurance (UI) is temporary income:

  • For eligible workers
  • Who lose their jobs
  • Through no fault of their own

To collect benefits, you must be ready, willing, and able to work and actively looking for work during each week in which you are claiming benefits.

To qualify for UI benefits, you must have enough work hours and wages in covered employment. In New York State, employers pay contributions that fund UI. It is not deducted from your paycheck. The Department of Labor decides if you qualify for benefits.

When to File: Promptly file your claim, in the first week that you lose your job. You must serve an unpaid "waiting period," equal to one full week of unemployment benefits, before you receive payments. A delay in filing may cost you benefits.

How to File:

Web Service
It is best to apply for UI online. Sign in with your NY.GOV ID and follow the instructions to file a claim. You may file your claim:

  • Monday - Thursday from 7:30 am to 7:30 pm (Eastern Time)
  • Friday from 7:30 am to 5:00 pm
  • Saturday - all day
  • Sunday until 7 pm

Phone Service
Call our Telephone Claim Center, toll-free during business hours to file a claim.

  • 1-888-209-8124 for New York State residents
  • 1-877-358-5306 for out-of-state residents
  • 8 am to 5 pm, Monday - Friday

If you file by phone, we offer translation services. Use your phone keypad to enter the number for the language you choose. A voice recording will offer you these choices: English, Spanish, Russian, Cantonese, Mandarin, Creole, Korean, Polish, and all other languages

Things you need to file your claim:

  • Your Social Security number
  • Your driver license or Motor Vehicle ID card number (if you have either one)
  • Your complete mailing address and zip code
  • A phone number where we can reach you from 8 am - 5 pm, Monday -Friday
  • Your Alien Registration card number (if you are not a U.S. Citizen and have a card)
  • Names and addresses of all your employers for the last 18 months, including those in other states
  • Employer Registration number or Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) of your most recent employer (FEIN is on your W-2 forms)
  • Your copies of forms SF8 and SF50, if you were a federal employee
  • Your most recent separation form (DD 214), for military service

You can file a claim without all of these documents. However, missing information can delay your first payment.

If you cannot print web pages, have a pen and paper to copy information.

If you choose direct deposit of your weekly benefits, you need a check that has your bank routing and checking account numbers.

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Division of Motor Vehicles Benefits:

Special Vehicle License Plates: New York State law requires you to pay two different fees; an initial fee when you order a custom plate and an annual fee when you renew your registration. When you renew your vehicle registration, you must pay your registration fee and the annual custom plate fee. Most vehicle registrations in NYS are issued for two years. Not all specialized military plates are listed below. Application for Military and Veteran Custom Plates.

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Army National Guard Plate: Member must provide a letter from Commanding Officer. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.
Eligibility: Army National Guard member.

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Airborne Plate: Member must provide a copy of Airborne Association membership card, or copy of DD-214, or copy of Airborne ID card. $38.75Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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American Legion Plate: Member must provide copy of current membership card. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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Army Reserve Plate: Member must provide a letter from Commanding Officer or copy of active military ID. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.
Eligibility:
Army Reserve member

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Combat Infantrymen Plate: Copy of DD214; DMV order form and approval from NYS Commander. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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Medal of Honor Plate: Applicant must show proof of award. No fees.

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Disabled American Veteran Plate: Applicant must have approval by organization. $38.75. Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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Disabled Veteran Plate: Applicant must present copy of DD-214 or discharge papers; proof of service-related disability from Veterans Administration and a letter from medical doctor or form MV-664-1. $28.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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Former Prisoner of War Plate: Applicant must present copy of DD-214 or discharge papers or letter from Veterans Administration verifying Former POW status. No fees.

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40 & 8 (The Grande Voiture du New York, La Societe Des Quarante Hommes et Huit Chevaux) Plate: Applicant must present copy of current membership card. $60.00 Initial Custom Plate Fee and $31.25 Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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Gold Star Mother Plate: Applicant must present official documentation stating Child died while serving in the U.S. Armed Forces. $28.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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Jewish War Veterans of America Plate: Applicant must present proof of membership in the Jewish War Veterans of America Association. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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Korean War Veterans Plate: Applicant must present copy of DD-214 or discharge papers or letter from Veterans Administration verifying service dates between 6/27/50 - 1/31/55. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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Pearl Harbor Survivor Plate: A Veteran who can provide DD-214 and official statement of verifying service at Pearl Harbor on 12/7/1941. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no annual fee when you renew your registration.

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Persian Gulf Veteran Plate: Copy of DD214 verifying service dates in the Persian Gulf between 8/2/1990 and 4/6/1991. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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Purple Heart Recipient (Vehicle) Plate: The Veteran must provide DD-214 or letter from Veterans Administration showing the awarding of the Purple Heart. An initial fee of $28.75 when you order a custom plate and no annual fee when you renew your registration.

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Purple Heart Recipient (Motorcycle) Plate: The Veteran must provide DD-214 or letter from Veterans Administration showing the awarding of the Purple Heart. $16.25 when you order a custom motorcycle plate and no annual fee when you renew your registration.

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Saratoga National Cemetery Honor Guard Association Plate: Copy of membership card and approval by organization. $43.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and $15.00 Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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State Guard: Letter from Commanding Officer. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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US Veteran (Vehicle) Plate: Applicant must provide copy of DD-214, discharge papers or NYS drivers license displaying Veteran status. $38.75 Initial Custom Vehicle Plate Fee and no annual renewal fee.

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US Veteran (Motorcycle) Plate: The Veteran must provide DD-214, discharge papers or NYS drivers license displaying Veteran status. Initial fee of $26.25 and no annual renewal fee.

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Veterans of Foreign Wars Plate: Applicant must provide copy of current membership card. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no annual renewal fee.

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Vietnam Veteran (Vehicle) Plate: Applicant must provide copy of DD-214 or discharge papers verifying service dates between 12/22/1961 - 5/7/1975. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no annual renewal fee.

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Vietnam Veteran (Motorcycle) Plate: Applicant must provide copy of DD-214 or discharge papers verifying service dates between 12/22/1961 - 5/7/1975. $26.25 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no annual renewal fee.  

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Vietnam Veterans of America Plate: Applicant must provide copy of DD-214 and approval by organization. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no annual renewal fee.

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War on Terror Veteran Plate: Veteran must provide DD-214 or discharge papers stating Veteran served in the Persian Gulf or Afghanistan on or after 9/11/2001. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no annual fee when you renew your registration.

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World War II Veterans Plate: copy of DD214 or discharge papers showing dates between 1941 and 1945. $38.75 Initial Custom Plate Fee and no Annual Plate Renewal Fee.

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E-Z Pass: A Disabled Veteran who may be qualified for and obtains a fee exempt vehicle registration from the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles may enroll in the Authority's Disabled Veteran Non-Revenue E-ZPass program. Enrollment in the program allows free, unlimited travel for the disabled Veteran anywhere on the Thruway system when the disabled Veteran is traveling in a qualifying vehicle; (2-axle, 4-tire cars, vans or pickup trucks or motorcycles). The Disabled Veteran Non-Revenue E-Zpass Application must be submitted to receive the E-ZPass

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Registration Fee Exemptions for Military Veterans: Most military Veterans are not exempt from vehicle registration fees. You can qualify to be exempt from registration fees and vehicle plate fees if:

  • you are a qualified disabled Veteran under Federal Title 38, or
  • you qualify for and apply for Medal of Honor custom plates, or
  • you are 62 years of age or older and you qualify for and apply for Former Prisoner of War custom plates.

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Health and Insurance Benefits:

Group Insurance: The Militia Association of New York Inc. offers Guard members, their Spouses, and Children $5,000 to $250,000 term insurance. No war or aviation exclusion.
Eligibility:
Member of Army/Air National Guard.

Injury/Death Benefits: Guard members may claim a pension. Survivor's benefits available to dependents depending on nature and extent of disability. State supplemental burial allowance for those killed on federal active duty in combat or duty subject to hostile fire.
Eligibility: Injury/Death occurs while serving on State Active Duty; member of Army/Air National Guard.

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General Information: For information on possible health care treatment and benefits information and applications, contact the New York State Division of Veterans' Affairs toll-free hotline at:
1-888-VETS NYS (1-888-838-7697)

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Parks and Recreation Benefits:

Hunting, Trapping and Fishing Privileges: New York State Veterans with a 40% or greater disability rating as documented annually by letter from the Veteran's Administration are eligible for $5.00 hunting and fishing Sportsman licenses.

Free Bow hunting and/or Muzzle loading License: Veterans with a 40% or greater disability rating as documented annually by letter from the Veteran's Administration are.
Eligibility: A base hunting license is required.

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Sporting Licenses Under the Patriot Plan: Free hunting/big game, free fishing and free trapping licenses are available to NYS residents who have the appropriate Sportsmen Education and are active (full or part time status) Service members of the military.
Eligibility:
NYS Residents who are members of the New York National Guard, U.S. Reserve Forces, or full time Active duty stationed outside NY who will be in NY for no longer than 30 days for either leave or furlough.

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Miscellaneous Benefits

Gold Star Parent Annuity: authorizes an annuity payment of up to $500 per Gold Star parent of a deceased Veteran.
Eligibility: Applicants approved for the Gold Star Annuity Payment are required to verify eligibility on a yearly basis. To be eligible, applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • The applicant must be a Gold Star Parent (as defined in 10 USC 1126)
  • The applicant must be a resident of New York State and domiciliary

Applications may be submitted at any time. Payments will be authorized and disbursed in semi-annual installments (March and September). The following documentation is required to process a Gold Star Parent Annuity Benefit:

  1. Gold Star Parent Annuity Benefit Application form: GoldStarAnnuityApplication.pdf
  2. Evidence of military service of the deceased Veteran. Acceptable evidence includes a DD Form 1300 (Report of Casualty); or a copy of the telegram from the U.S. Department of Defense advising the parent of his or her loss.
  3. A proof of New York State residency. Acceptable evidence includes a copy of the applicant's property tax bill or utility bill, voter registration documentation, pay stub or current NYS Driver's License.

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Voter Registration: Veterans can register to vote in person at a county Board of Elections, or at any New York State Division of Veteran's Affairs benefits counseling office. If you have any questions, visit your state Veteran's counselor who will provide you a voter registration form.

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Homes for Veterans Program: This program offers fixed-rate mortgages with interest rates 0.375% below the already low interest rates charged on SONYMA mortgages with down payment assistance. The Homes for Veterans Program features the following:

  • Veterans, and their Spouses or co-borrowers, need not be a first-time homebuyer.
  • Interest rates that are 0.375% lower than our standard interest rates (for loans with down payment assistance).
  • Down payment assistance up to the greater of $3,000 or 3% of the home purchase price.
  • No points or origination fees.
  • Minimum borrower cash contribution only 1% (the remaining 2% can come from a gift or other acceptable source).

Eligibility: The Veteran must have served in the active military and discharged under conditions other than dishonorable.

In addition, any active duty service members, honorably discharged National Guardsmen, or honorably discharged Reservist, who are first time homebuyers may take advantage of the program benefits if they are:

  • A U.S. military personnel (including those currently serving in the reserves) stationed in New York State, regardless of discharge status)
  • An active or honorably discharged National Guardsman
  • An active or honorably discharged Reservist

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New York State Blind Annuity: The Blind Annuity Program benefit is for legally blind wartime Veterans, or surviving un-remarried Spouses of legally blind wartime Veterans, who live and are domiciled in New York State. Blindness need not be a service-connected disability.
Eligibility: A qualifying Veteran must be a New York State resident and domiciliary who is determined to be legally blind (20/200 vision in the better eye with best correction, or has 20- degree limitation of field of vision), and who served on active duty during specified periods or received an expeditionary medal for certain conflicts. Generally, the Veteran must have served at least 90 days active duty for other than training purposes. However, fewer than 90 days active duty is acceptable if the Veteran was discharged for a service-connected disability.

To demonstrate New York State residency, a Veteran or un-remarried surviving Spouse of a Veteran must submit a copy (no original needed) of one authoritative document showing proof of residency in New York.

If a Veteran met all the criteria for the Blind Annuity benefit, but never actually received the benefit during his or her lifetime, the un-remarried surviving Spouse of that Veteran may still be eligible to receive the benefit.

Complete and return the Blind Annuity Application to:

NYS Division of Veterans' Affairs

2 Empire State Plaza, 17th Fl

Albany, New York 12223

In addition, you must fill out and return to the same address the Report of Legal Blindness.

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State Veterans' Nursing Homes: The New York State Veterans' Homes are skilled nursing facilities owned and operated by the New York State Department of Health and SUNY for Veterans and their dependents. They exist to provide quality care to all eligible Veterans and dependents in need of skilled nursing care and rehabilitative services. There are five New York State Veterans Homes in the State. NYS Veterans Home at St. Albans a 250-bed facility, NYS Veterans Home at Batavia a 126 bed facility adjacent to the Veterans Affairs Medical Center, NYS Veterans Home at Oxford operates at 242- bed Veterans home, Long Island State Veterans Home and NYS Veterans Home at Montrose a 250-bed facility.
Eligibility:

The applicant must require skilled nursing care and:

  • Have entered active duty from the State of New York or be a New York State resident for one year prior to application for admission; and
  • Veteran must also have had an honorable discharge from the US Armed Forces; and
  • Veteran must have had at least thirty (30) days of active service;
  • A Spouse of an otherwise qualified Veteran, unless legally separated, may be admitted to the Home if the Spouse was married to an eligible Veteran for 1 year prior to application and requires skilled nursing care.
  • A Veteran accompanied by their Spouse both of whom require skilled nursing care will receive the highest priority for admission followed by "wartime" Veterans; "non-wartime" Veterans, Spouses and un-remarried surviving Spouses, and then Gold Star Mothers and Fathers
  • For a Veteran with a service connected disability rating at 70% or greater, the Department of Veterans Affairs will pay State Veterans Homes the full cost to provide skilled nursing to that Veteran (38 U.S.C. §1745).

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Service Members' Group Life Insurance Premium Reimbursement Program: This program provides reimbursement for premiums that individual Service members pay during qualifying periods of service. The recently published DMNA Regulation 1-2 has specific information on the program including eligibility and the process to receive reimbursement.
Eligibility: A Service member must be an active member of the New York Army National Guard, New York Air National Guard, or the New York Naval Militia with an active status in the US Navy Reserve, US Coast Guard Reserve, or US Marine Corps Reserve. Service members in a Title 10 status, Title 32 status, for reasons other than training and/or State Active Duty (SAD) status may be eligible. Consult DMNA regulation 1-2 for further guidance. All eligible Service members enrolled in SGLI and Service members must submit separate applications based on the type of duty performed. Applications must be submitted by November 1 of each year for duty performed in the previous federal fiscal year.

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Supplemental Burial Allowance: A supplemental burial allowance of up to $6,000 is authorized for certain military personnel killed in combat or dying from combat wounds. The burial allowance will be paid to the family member responsible for funeral and burial expenses. To apply for the allowance, download and fill out the Application for Supplemental Burial Allowance form.

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Military Installations in New York Army

Active Duty:

Army
Fort Drum: http://www.drum.army.mil/Pages/index.aspx
Watervliet Arsenal: http://www.wva.army.mil/
West Point Military Academy: http://www.usma.edu/SitePages/Home.aspx
West Point: http://www.westpoint.army.mil/default.aspx
Fort Hamilton: http://www.hamilton.army.mil/

Navy
Naval Support Activity Saratoga Springs, NY: http://www.cnic.navy.mil/regions/cnrma/installations/nsa_saratoga_springs.html

National Guard:
New York National Guard Joint Headquarters: http://dmna.ny.gov/  

New York Army National Guard
New York Army National Guard: http://ny.ng.mil/Pages/Default.aspx

New York Air National Guard
New York Air National Guard: http://dmna.ny.gov/ang/
Hancock Field Air National Guard Base: http://www.hancockfield.ang.af.mil/
109th Airlift Wing:  http://www.109aw.ang.af.mil/
106th Rescue Wing: http://www.106rqw.ang.af.mil/

United States Army Reserve (USAR):

Regional Support Command (RSC) Headquarters, 99th RSC: http://www.usar.army.mil/ourstory/commands/99RSC/Pages/default.aspx

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Veterans Administration (VA) Medical Facilities in New York:

Veterans Health Administration
VA Health Care System
Buffalo: VA Western New York Healthcare System, 3495 Bailey Ave, 716-834-9200 / 800-532-8387
Montrose: VA Hudson Valley Health Care System, 2094 Albany Post Rd, 914-737-4400
New York: VA NY Harbor Healthcare System, Manhattan Campus, 423 East 23rd St, 212-686-7500

VA Medical Centers
Albany: Albany Stratton VA Medical Center, 113 Holland Ave, 516-626-5000 / 800-223-4810
Batavia: VA Western New York Healthcare System at Batavia, 222 Richmond Ave, 585-297-1000
Bath: Bath VA Medical Center, 76 Veterans Ave, 607-664-4000 / 877-845-3247
Bronx: James J. Peters VA Medical Center (Bronx, NY), 130 West Kingsbridge Rd, 718-584-9000
Brooklyn: Brooklyn Campus of the VA NY Harbor Healthcare System, 800 Poly PL, 718-836-6600
Buffalo: VA Western New York Healthcare System at Buffalo, 3495 Bailey Ave, 716-834-9200 / 800-532-8387
Canandaigua: Canandaigua VA Medical Center, 400 Fort Hill Ave, 585-394-2000 / 800-204-9917
Montrose: Franklin Delano Roosevelt Campus of the VA Hudson Valley Healthcare System (Montrose), 2094 Albany Post Rd, 914-737-4400
New York: Manhattan Campus of the VA NY Harbor Healthcare System, 423 E 23rd St, 212-686-7500
Northport: Northport VA Medical Center, 79 Middleville Rd, 631-261-4400
Syracuse: Syracuse VA Medical Center, 800 Irving Ave, 315-425-4400 / 800-792-4334 Wappingers Falls: Castle Point Campus of the VA Hudson Valley Health Care System, 41 Castle Point Rd, 845-831-2000

Domiciliary
Jamaica: St. Albans Community Living Center, 179-00 Linden Blvd, 718-526-1000

Outpatient Clinic
Syracuse: Behavioral Health Facility, 620 Erie Blvd West, 315-425-4400 x53463

Community Based Outpatient Clinics
Auburn: Auburn VA Outpatient Clinic, 17 Lansing St, 315-255-7002 / Fax: 315-255-7382
Bainbridge: Bainbridge VA Outpatient Clinic, 109 North Main St, 607-967-8590
Bay Shore: Bay Shore Clinic, 132 East Main St, 631-754-7978
Binghamton: Binghamton VA Outpatient Clinic, Garvin Building, 425 Robinson St, 607-772-9100 / Fax: 607-772-3081
Brooklyn: Chapel Street Veterans Healthcare Center, 40 Flatbush Ave, Extension, 8th Fl, 718-439-4300 / Fax: 718-439-4303
Carmel: Carmel Community Clinic/Putnam County, 1875 Route 6, Provident Bank, (2nd Fl), 845-228-5291 / Fax: 845-228-5295
Catskill: Catskill VA Outpatient Clinic, Columbia Greene Medical Arts Building, Suite A102, 159 Jefferson Hgts, 518-943-7515
Clifton Park: Clifton Park VA Outpatient Clinic, 1673 Route 9, 518-383-8506
Dunkirk: Dunkirk VA Outpatient Clinic, 166 East 4th St, 706-203-6474 / Fax: 716-363-1235
East Meadow: East Meadow Clinic, 2201 Hempstead Turnpike, Building Q, 631-754-7978
Elmira: Elmira VA Outpatient Clinic, 200 Madison Ave, Suite 2E, 877-845-3247
Fonda: Fonda VA Outpatient Clinic, 2623 State Hwy 30A, 518-853-1247
Freeville: Tompkins/Cortland County VA Outpatient Clinic, 1451 Dryden Rd, 607-347-4101 / Fax: 607-347-4110
Glens Falls: Glens Falls VA Outpatient Clinic, 84 Broad St, 518-798-6066 / Fax: 518-761-2097
Goshen: Goshen Community Clinic, 30 Hatfield Ln, Suite 204, 845-294-6927 / Fax: 845-294-0937
Jamestown: Jamestown VA Outpatient Clinic, 608 West 3rd St, 716-338-1511 / Fax: 716-338-1521
Kingston: Kingston VA Outpatient Clinic, 324 Plaza Rd, 845-331-8322 / Fax: 845-331-0365
Lackawanna: Lackawanna VA Outpatient Clinic, OLV Family Care Center, 227 Ridge Rd, 716-822-5944 / Fax: 716-822-3937
Lockport: Lockport VA Outpatient Clinic, 5883 Snyder Dr, 716-438-3890 / Fax: 716-438-3894
Malone: Malone VA Outpatient Clinic, 3372 State Route 11, Main St, 518-483-1529
Massena: Massena VA Outpatient Clinic, Massena Memorial Hospital, 1 Hospital Dr, 315-769-4253 / Fax: 315-769-4676
Monticello: Monticello Community Clinic, 55 Sturgis Rd, 845-791-4936 / Fax: 845-791-4977
New City: New City Community Clinic, 345 North Main St, Upper Level, 845-634-8942 / Fax: 845-708-9183
New York: Harlem Community Clinic, 55 West 125th St, 646-273-8125
Niagara Falls: Niagara Falls VA Outpatient Clinic, 2201 Pine Ave, 716-862-8580 / Fax: 716-284-1702
Olean: Olean VA Outpatient Clinic, 465 North Union St, 716-373-7709 / Fax: 716-373-8117
Oswego: Oswego VA Outpatient Clinic, 437 State Route 104 E, 315-207-0120
Patchogue: Patchogue Community Clinic, 4 Phyllis Dr, 631-754-7978
Pine Plains: Eastern Dutchess Pine Plains Community Clinic, 2881 Church St, Rt 199, 518-398-9240 / Fax: 518-398-9246
Plattsburgh: Plattsburgh VA Outpatient Clinic, 80 Sharron Ave, 518-561-6247
Port Jervis: Port Jervis Community Clinic, 150 Pike St, 845-856-5396 / Fax: 845-856-5410
Poughkeepsie: Poughkeepsie Community Clinic, 488 Freedom Plains Rd, Suite 120, 845-452-5151 / Fax: 845-452-6516
Riverhead: Riverhead Clinic, 300 Center Dr, 631-754-7978
Rochester: Rochester VA Outpatient Clinic, 465 Westfall Rd, 585-463-2600 / Fax: 585-463-2649
Rome: Rome - Donald J. Mitchell VA Outpatient Clinic, 125 Brookley Rd, Bldg 510, 315-334-7100 / Fax: 315-334-7171
Saranac Lake: Saranac Lake Community Based Outpatient Clinic, 33 Depot St, 518-626-5237 / Fax: 518-891-5838
Schenectady: Schenectady VA Outpatient Clinic, 1322 Gerling St, Sheridan Plaza, 518-346-3334 / Fax: 518-346-4030
Springville: Springville Community Based Outpatient Clinic, 27 Franklin St, 716-592-7400 / Fax: 716-592-7519
Staten Island: Staten Island Community Clinic, 1150 South Ave, 3rd Fl, Suite 301, 718-761-2973
Sunnyside: Thomas B. Noonan VA Community Clinic (Queens), 47-01 Queens Blvd, 718-741-4800
Troy: Troy VA Outpatient Clinic, 295 River St, 518-274-7707 / Fax: 518-266-0555
Valley Stream: Valley Stream Clinic, 99 South Central Ave, 631-754-7978
Watertown: Watertown VA Outpatient Clinic, 19472 US Route 11, 315-221-7026 / Fax: 315-788-8899
Wellsville: Wellsville VA Outpatient Clinic, 3458 Riverside Dr, Route 19, 607-664-4660
Westport: Westport Community Based Outpatient Clinic, 7426 NYS Route 9N, 518-626-5236 / Fax: 518-962-8440
White Plains: White Plains Community Clinic, 300 Hamilton Ave, Suite C, 914-682-6250 / Fax: 914-682-6263
Yonkers: Yonkers Community Clinic, 124 New Main St, 914-375-8055 x4400

Vet Center -
877-927-8387
Albany: Albany Vet Center, 17 Computer Dr West, 518-626-5130 / Fax: 518-458-8613
Babylon: Babylon Vet Center, 100 West Main St, 631-661-3930 / Fax: 631-422-5677
Binghamton: Binghamton Vet Center, 53 Chenango St, 607-722-2393 / Fax: 607-722-0143
Bronx: Bronx Vet Center, 2471 Morris Ave, Suite 1A, 718-367-3500 / Fax: 718-364-6867
Brooklyn: Brooklyn Veterans Resource Center, 25 Chapel St, Suite 604, 718-630-2830 / Fax: 718-624-3323
Buffalo: Buffalo Vet Center, 2372 Sweet Home Rd, Suite 1, 716-862-7350 / Fax: 716-691-6450
Hicksville: Nassau Vet Center, 970 South Broadway, 516-348-0088 / Fax: 516-348-0266
Middletown: Middletown Vet Center, 726 East Main St, Suite 203, 845-342-9917 / Fax: 845-343-8655
New York: Harlem Vet Center, 2279 - 3rd Ave, 2nd Fl, 646-273-8139 / Fax: 212-426-8273
New York: Manhattan Vet Center, 32 Broadway 2nd Fl, Suite 200, 212-951-6866 / Fax: 212-742-9593
Rochester: Rochester Vet Center, 2000 S. Winton Rd, Bldg 5, Suite 201, 585-232-5040 / Fax: 585-232-5072
Staten Island: Staten Island Vet Center, 60 Bay St, 718-816-4499 / Fax: 718-816-6899
Syracuse: Syracuse Vet Center, 109 Pine St, Suite 101, 315-478-7127 / Fax: 315-478-7209
Watertown: Watertown Vet Center, 210 Court St, Suite 20, 315-782-5479 / Fax: 315-782-0491
White Plains: White Plains Vet Center, 300 Hamilton Ave, Suite C, 914-682-6250 / Fax: 914-682-6263
Woodhaven: Queens Vet Center, 75-10B 91 Ave, 718-296-2871 / Fax: 718-296-4660

Veterans Integrated Services Network (VISN)
Albany: VISN 2: VA Healthcare Network Upstate New YorkBronx: VISN 3: VA NY/NJ Veterans Healthcare Network

Veterans Benefits Administration
Regional Benefit Office
New York: New York Regional Benefit Office, 245 W. Houston St
Buffalo: Buffalo Regional Benefit Office, 130 South Elmwood Ave

Intake Site (Pre-Discharge Claims Assistance)
For Drum: Fort Drum, Fort Drum Outbased Office/ Dept of VA

National Cemetery Administration
National Cemetery
Albany: Albany Rural Cemetery Soldiers' Lot, Cemetery Ave, 518-581-9128 / Fax: 518-583-6975
Bath: Bath National Cemetery, VA Medical Center, San Juan Ave, 607-664-4853 / Fax: 607-664-4761
Brooklyn: Cypress Hills National Cemetery, 625 Jamaica Ave, 631-454-4949 / Fax: 631-694-5422
Calverton: Calverton National Cemetery, 210 Princeton Blvd, 631-727-5410 / Fax: 631-369-4397
Elmira: Woodlawn National Cemetery, 1825 Davis St, 607-732-5411 / Fax: 607-732-1769
Farmingdale: Long Island National Cemetery, 2040 Wellwood Ave, 631-454-4949 / Fax: 631-694-5422
Schuylerville: Gerald B. H. Solomon Saratoga National Cemetery, 200 Duell Rd, 518-581-9128 / Fax: 518-583-6975

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Resources

http://www.cs.ny.gov/dpm/b55.cfm

http://www.cs.ny.gov/pio/summaryofcslaw/summofcsl-veterans-rights.cfm

http://labor.ny.gov/vets/employspec/veteransemployspec.shtm

http://veterans.ny.gov/

http://www2.va.gov/directory/guide/state.asp?State=NY&dnum=ALL

http://www.defense.gov/specials/outreachpublic/ny.html

http://www.labor.ny.gov/home/

http://dmv.ny.gov/custom-plates/military-and-veterans

http://www.fedshirevets.gov/job/vetpref/index.aspx

http://www.retirementliving.com/taxes-new-york-wyoming#NEWYORK

http://www.cs.ny.gov/

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Document Review Date: 16 October 2014