Governor Bob McDonnell today launched the new Virginia Veterans ID Card available from the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) in partnership with the Department of Veterans Services (DVS) during an afternoon event at the McGuire Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Richmond. The card will help thousands of Virginia veterans identify themselves as veterans and obtain retail and restaurant discounts around the state. The DMV 2 Go mobile office was present to process veterans' applications for the cards onsite this afternoon. Governor McDonnell, a U.S. Army veteran who served for a total of 21 years in active duty and reserve roles, visited the mobile office at today's event and was one of the first to apply for the new ID card.
Speaking about the launch of the Virginia Veterans ID Card, Governor McDonnell said, "Virginia is home to 823,000 veterans who have protected and served our great nation. It is Virginia's duty to serve them. The launch of the Virginia Veterans ID card will provide a new state resource to aid in obtaining discounts and other services from the Commonwealth's retail community, as well as providing convenient identification for Veterans. This initiative is a perfect example of state agencies working together to assist those individuals who have served and sacrificed for our great nation. We take seriously our responsibility to provide resources and support to our veterans. This is an important step towards reaching our goal of making Virginia the 'most Veteran friendly state in the nation.'"
Currently, retired military and veterans with a service-connected disability rating from the U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs are issued ID cards. These men and women comprise just a fraction of the state's veteran population. The remainder of Virginia's 823,000 veterans have no way to show veteran status other than by presenting their discharge documents. The new Virginia Veterans ID Card is convenient and fits in a wallet, cutting down on Veterans having to carry the DD 214 military discharge document as identification.
Paul Galanti, Commissioner of the Virginia Department of Veterans Services, added, "Retailers and restaurants across the state offer discounts and other special promotions to veterans and military, especially around Memorial Day and Veterans Day. This is a winning situation for both veterans and retailers."
Veterans may apply for the cards in person at any DMV customer service center, DMV 2 Go mobile office, or online at http://www.dmvnow.com/. Each applicant needs to present an unexpired Virginia driver's license or DMV-issued ID card, the veterans ID card application, his or her DD214, DD 256 or WD AGO document, and $10. The card, which does not expire, will be mailed to the veteran and should arrive within a week. In the meantime, the temporary veterans ID card received at the time of the in-person application can be used as proof of veteran status.
DMV Commissioner Richard D. Holcomb stated, "We are proud to partner with the Department of Veterans Services to further Governor McDonnell's vision for more veteran-friendly programs in the Commonwealth. Most Virginians interact with DMV, whether through our website or by visiting a customer service center. And when they do, we hope Virginia's veterans take advantage of this convenient unique service for them."