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New Law Designed to Assist Military Spouses Get Jobs

Press Release

Location: Topeka, KS

Flanked by members of the United States military, Kansas Governor Sam Brownback signed a bill today designed to assist military spouses get jobs when their spouses are transferred to the state. Sub. for HB 2178 requires a state licensing agency to issue a license to a nonresident military spouse in order for the spouse to lawfully practice a regulated profession in Kansas.

"So many times a military spouse struggles to get a job because of the paperwork and application process involved in getting a professional license. This new law tears down that barrier -- and helps our businesses find quality, well-trained professionals," Governor Brownback said.

The new law requires state licensing agencies to issue the license under two circumstances:

* If the military spouse is seeking a license in a profession that has an endorsement or reciprocity statutes in another state.
* If the military spouse meets several qualifiers, including:
o holds a current license in another state with equal licensing requirements
o has not had her/his licensed limited, suspended, revoked nor has been censured nor had her/his application to practice denied
o has not been disciplined by a licensing entity or isn't subject to an unresolved complaint
o submits a signed affidavit stating all information on application is true and accurate.

A state agency may require a military spouse to complete additional steps if that person hasn't actively practice her/his occupation during the previous two years. The person is entitled to all rights provided and subject to all obligations required under state law, except if her/his license is revoked or suspended in another state, it then is automatically revoked or suspended in Kansas, with no right to a hearing.

The Governor also signed a proclamation declaring Thursday "Armed Forces Appreciation Day" at the Statehouse as well as a statement of support for the Guard and Reserve. Members of the Governor's Military Council as well as leadership of Fort Riley, Fort Leavenworth, Forbes Field and McConnell Air Force Base joined the Governor for the signings.

"There are Kansans serving our great country here at home and overseas, in all services and components. Today is an opportunity for us to show our deep gratitude for their service and sacrifice -- and the sacrifices made by their families and to pledge our support for them in peace, in crisis and in war," Governor Brownback said.

Maj. Gen. (KS) Lee Tafanelli, the state's adjutant general, echoed the Governor's support and appreciation for our country's military.

"The men and women in uniform who serve our country often do so at great sacrifice to themselves and their families," Maj. Gen. (KS) Tafanelli said. "Many have given their lives to protect our freedoms. I urge every Kansan to take some time on this day to say "Thank you' to at least one of these fine individuals."

So far this session the Governor has signed four bills into law. He is expected to sign two bills that are part of his water reform policy on Monday at Garden City High School.

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