Assemblyman Kieran Michael Lalor
Thanks to pressure from around the country, including my Commitment to Military Education Act in New York, the Army, Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard all restored their tuition assistance programs earlier this month. The tuition assistance programs had been suspended as part of sequester-mandated cuts. It meant servicemen and women who had been promised tuition assistance when they enlisted would not be able to complete their degrees. I’m proud to have worked with Senator Ball on the Senate side. A special thanks goes to Congressman Chris Gibson for his work introducing and passing the legislation in Washington that actually restored the federal funding for tuition assistance.
We often talk about the dysfunction in Albany and the recent chain of corruption charges reminds us that New York is in desperate need of ethics reform. But, it’s also important to recognize when politicians work across party lines and do the right thing. The Assembly did that when 49 bipartisan cosponsors signed on to the Commitment to Military Education Act to help our troops.
The Commitment to Military Education Act proposed tuition reductions for servicemen and women currently enrolled in SUNY or CUNY schools who were affected by the suspension of the tuition assistance program. It was the right thing to do. It was important to our servicemen and women. The Assembly quickly set aside partisanship to step up for our troops.
I’m proud to have led this bipartisan effort that played a role in restoring the tuition assistance program. There is a place for partisanship in our system, but sometimes it needs to be set aside. We did that with the Commitment to Military Education Act and we did right by our troops.
### Assemblyman Kieran Michael Lalor, a former teacher at Our Lady of Lourdes in Poughkeepsie, is a Marine Corps veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom and founder of the Dutchess County based consulting firm KML Strategies, LLC. Lalor is the founder of Afghanistan & Iraq Veterans for Congress and a frequent guest on the Fox News Channel. He is a graduate of John Jay High School, Providence College and Pace Law School and lives in Fishkill with his wife Mary Jo and their four young children Katie, Riley, Mikey and Kieran Jr..