Senator Greg Ball (R, C – Patterson) was honored by the members of the Military Order of the Purple Heart (MOPH) with a Special Recognition Award at their yearly convention recently at the Ramada Hotel in Newburgh.
The Special Recognition Award is given each year to a leader who best demonstrates inspirational leadership and distinguished service to veterans. MORH presented this year’s award to State Senator Greg Ball, the chairman of Chairman of Homeland Security and Veterans Affairs.
“As an Air Force Academy graduate, a former Air Force Officer and the Chairman of Homeland Security and Veterans Affairs this is a great honor and I am very grateful to have been selected. I would like to thank Willy Nazario, Eugene Parrotta, the Montrose Action Committee and everyone else that is involved in the Military Order of the Purple Heart,” said Ball. “I am honored to serve as the State Senator to so many veterans that have all chosen a path of courage, honor, integrity and bravery; a path that helped shape America as we know it, protecting our way of life and liberty.”
Ball has been an active supporter for all of the veterans across the state’s 40th Senate District. He has created a Veterans Hall of Fame, held a thanksgiving thank you dinner for over 800 veterans, passed legislation to protect Military Funeral’s from protest, secured $500,000 for a New York State Veterans Cemetery and fought to save Montrose Campus of the VA Hudson Valley Health Care System.
“It was an honor for me to present the award to Senator Ball for all he has done for veterans and the Military Order of the Purple Heart,” said MORPH Service Officer, Eugene Parrotta. “Senator Ball has done a lot to make veterans’ lives easier in this state. I wish we had more people like him and I am sure he will always be there for us.”
Ball is now currently working to secure a state preference for veteran owned businesses, protections for veterans ailing from a traumatic brain injury. The New York State Senate today passed legislation (S.2423), sponsored by Ball that would give greater access to state contracts to veterans who were disabled during their service.
The bill would codify for New York an identical and highly successful program adopted for federal contracting. Given the increase in the number of veterans and disabled veterans due to recent overseas conflicts, this bill would provide a small measure of recognition that this group of selfless men and women deserve.
“We must strengthen opportunities in state contracting for service-disabled veteran owned small businesses,” said Ball, who currently chairs the state Senate Committee on Veterans, Homeland Security and Military Affairs. “The extraordinary service rendered to our nation by veterans returning with injuries incurred or aggravated in the line of duty during active service with the armed services is worthy of providing a contract preference to all service-disabled veteran businesses. With the number of returning veterans suffering with ailments like traumatic brain injury, this bill would provide a small measure of recognition and support that these heroes so fully deserve.”
“Servicemen and women who are injured during their service deserve our full support once they return to our communities,” said Majority Leader Dean Skelos. “Disabled veterans deserve an opportunity to participate in obtaining contracts with state agencies for their small businesses. This legislation has been effective on the federal level and I am happy that we are making similar initiatives on behalf of disabled veterans in New York State.”
The legislation would require that state agencies provide the opportunity for service-disabled veterans’ businesses to obtain state contracts. It would establish a goal of having small businesses owned by service-disabled veterans to comprise a minimum of 3 percent of the agency’s contracts. The bill also details the implementation and reporting standards to help state agencies comply with the requirement, and task various commissioners, deputy commissioners, and the Attorney General with supporting the implementation of this preference.
The bill has been sent to the Assembly.
Ball is also planning a barbeque on July 7th for “America’s Bravest.”