Memorial Day is a time to honor the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice while protecting our country and the freedoms we enjoy today. Our appreciation for those who died defending the blessings of liberty is boundless.

To help protect war memorials around the state, the General Assembly enacted a new law this year allowing local governments to transfer ownership of these memorials and monuments to non-profit organizations who will see to their maintenance and upkeep, such as veterans groups or the Boys Scouts. By allowing these collaborative arrangements, we can prevent memorials dedicated to fallen Hoosier heroes from slipping into disrepair.

Another new law will allow the surviving spouses of veterans to indicate their status on their driver’s licenses or identification cards. The Bureau of Motor Vehicles will share this information with the Indiana Department of Veterans’ Affairs in order to ensure these families are connected with their county veteran service officers, who have specialized training and can offer resources and assistance.

The recently enacted two-year state budget also provides $1.82 million in funding for veteran service organizations, such as the American Legion and AMVETS, to improve assistance for veteran families seeking benefits and doubles funding for veteran problem-solving courts to $2 million.

As you enjoy Memorial Day weekend, please join House Republicans in remembering our fallen service members and those who are serving overseas today.