LANSING, Mich. – Vietnam veterans may soon be getting the state benefits and services they are entitled to, thanks to Senate Bill 70, which was recently introduced by U.S. Marine Corps. Corporal and Vietnam War veteran Sen. Vincent Gregory (D–Lathrup Village). The bill, which has bipartisan support, would amend Michigan’s Vietnam Veteran Era Bonus Act, or P.A. 370 of 1974, to extend the period of eligible service in which a person can receive a one-time bonus to May 7, 1975 — the official date when President Ford announced the end of the Vietnam era.

“Having served in Vietnam, I know there are many service men and women from the Vietnam Era who continued to serve even after the war was considered over,” Sen. Gregory said. “Many of them have been wrongly denied the state benefits and services they are entitled to because of the inaccuracy in the service dates range in the Vietnam Veteran Era Bonus Act.”

In the past, only eligible military members who served from January 1961 through September 1973 were eligible for the bonus.

“Our veterans deserve our support,” Sen. Gregory said. “Updating our laws to adequately reflect the dates of the Vietnam Era will go a long way in demonstrating how much we truly value their service.”

SB 70 was introduced in the Michigan Senate on Jan. 31, 2017, and has been referred to the Senate Appropriations Committee.