Establishes the New York state veterans' cemetery operation and maintenance fund to provide moneys for the operation and maintenance of state veterans' cemeteries; establishes the gift for veterans' cemetery operation and maintenance to provide revenue to such fund; such a gift may be made on a taxpayer's personal income tax return in whole dollar amounts.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the tax law, in relation to establishing a gift for veterans' cemetery operation and maintenance which may be made on personal income tax return; and to amend the state finance law, in relation to establishing the New York state veterans' cemetery operation and maintenance fund
PURPOSE: This bill would create a New York State veterans' cemetery operation and maintenance fund supported by a state income tax "check off' which would permit taxpayers to provide a gift to operate and maintain state veterans' cemeteries.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section 1- adds a new section 627-a to the tax law providing for a gift for veterans' cemetery operation and maintenance through a contribution on the personal income tax return.
Section 2- adds a new section 89-h to the state finance law establishing the "New York State veterans' cemetery operation and maintenance fund." Moneys in this fund shall be expended for the purposes of the operation and maintenance of state veteran's cemeteries.
JUSTIFICATION: Congress established the State Cemetery Grants Program in 1976 to assist states and US territories in the establishment, expansion, and improvement of veterans cemeteries. These state cemeteries provide a complement to the federal designated site and in no way are intended to replace them. Presently, there are no state cemeteries in New York State.
The Veterans Administration provides funding for up to 100 percent of the cost of establishing state cemeteries, but does not provide assistance for operation and maintenance. To date, the Veterans Administration has awarded 135 grants, totaling more than $189 million, to 29 states and Guam for the establishment, expansion, or improvement of 55 veterans cemeteries. In 2001 alone, state cemeteries accommodated over 15,000 burials. In 2006, the number of veteran deaths is expected to peak at 687,000. There will be a savings in burial costs to New York State veterans as the V.A. provides a plot or interment allowance to the state for burial at a state veterans' cemetery.
With the increasing age of our veterans, it is imperative that we provide the option of burial at a state veterans' cemetery. This bill would provide a mechanism by which to fund the operation and maintenance of these cemeteries.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2011: Referred to Investigations and Government Operations/A.226 Veterans' Affairs 2010: S.287 Referred to Investigations and Government Operations/A.6942 Veterans' Affairs 2009: S.287 Referred to Investigations and Government Operations/A.6942 Ways & Means 2008: S.1110-A 3rd Reading/A.7204-A Passed Assembly 2007: S.1110 3rd Reading/A.7204 Ways & Means 2006: S.737-A Finance 2005: S.737 3rd Reading 2004: S.7489 Rules
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None to the State.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 136--A 2011-2012 Regular Sessions IN SENATE (PREFILED) January 5, 2011 ___________Introduced by Sen. LITTLE -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Investigations and Govern- ment Operations -- recommitted to the Committee on Investigations and Government Operations in accordance with Senate Rule 6, sec. 8 -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee AN ACT to amend the tax law, in relation to establishing a gift for veterans' cemetery operation and maintenance which may be made on personal income tax return; and to amend the state finance law, in relation to establishing the New York state veterans' cemetery opera- tion and maintenance fund THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The tax law is amended by adding a new section 627-a to read as follows: S 627-A. GIFT FOR VETERANS' CEMETERY OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE. EFFECTIVE FOR ANY TAX YEAR COMMENCING ON OR AFTER JANUARY FIRST, TWO THOUSAND THIRTEEN, AN INDIVIDUAL IN ANY TAXABLE YEAR MAY ELECT TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE NEW YORK STATE VETERANS' CEMETERY OPERATION AND MAIN- TENANCE FUND. THE CONTRIBUTIONS SHALL BE IN ANY WHOLE DOLLAR AMOUNT AND SHALL NOT REDUCE THE AMOUNT OF STATE TAX OWED BY SUCH INDIVIDUAL. THE COMMISSIONER SHALL INCLUDE SPACE ON THE PERSONAL INCOME TAX RETURN TO ENABLE A TAXPAYER TO MAKE SUCH CONTRIBUTION. NOTWITHSTANDING ANY OTHER PROVISION OF LAW, ALL REVENUE COLLECTED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION SHALL BE CREDITED TO THE NEW YORK STATE VETERANS' CEMETERY OPERATION AND MAIN- TENANCE FUND, ESTABLISHED PURSUANT TO SECTION EIGHTY-NINE-H OF THE STATE FINANCE LAW. S 2. The state finance law is amended by adding a new section 89-h to read as follows:EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD00137-02-2 S. 136--A 2
S 89-H. NEW YORK STATE VETERANS' CEMETERY OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE FUND. 1. THERE IS HEREBY ESTABLISHED IN THE JOINT CUSTODY OF THE COMMIS- SIONER OF TAXATION AND FINANCE AND THE STATE COMPTROLLER, A SPECIAL FUND TO BE KNOWN AS THE "NEW YORK STATE VETERANS' CEMETERY OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE FUND". 2. SUCH FUND SHALL CONSIST OF ALL REVENUE RECEIVED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF TAXATION AND FINANCE, PURSUANT TO THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION SIX HUNDRED TWENTY-SEVEN-A OF THE TAX LAW AND ALL OTHER MONEYS APPROPRIATED, CREDITED OR TRANSFERRED THERETO FROM ANY OTHER FUND OR SOURCE PURSUANT TO LAW. 3. MONEYS IN THE NEW YORK STATE VETERANS' CEMETERY OPERATION AND MAIN- TENANCE FUND SHALL BE KEPT SEPARATE AND SHALL NOT BE COMMINGLED WITH ANY OTHER MONEYS IN THE CUSTODY OF THE COMMISSIONER OF TAXATION AND FINANCE AND THE STATE COMPTROLLER. 4. THE MONEYS IN SUCH FUND SHALL BE EXPENDED PURSUANT TO APPROPRI- ATIONS FOR THE PURPOSES OF THE OPERATION AND MAINTENANCE OF STATE VETER- ANS' CEMETERIES. S 3. This act shall take effect immediately.