Veterans & Soldiers
Delegate Mary-Dulany James maintains a strong commitment to veterans every session in Annapolis and while she is home in Harford County. Having been raised in a family that lauds military service, Mary-Dulany has a passion for assisting veterans and protecting their interests. Honoring those willing to sacrifice it all to keep our country strong and free has been and remains one of Mary-Dulany’s top priorities in Annapolis.
Mary-Dulany was a champion for veterans in the 2010 session when she successfully passed legislation to create a procurement goal for businesses owned by veterans as they contract with the State. For her dedication and hard work to get this bill passed, Delegate James was recognized by the Department of Maryland Disabled Veterans with an award.
During the 2008 legislative session, Mary-Dulany played a vital role in the passage of the Maryland Veterans Behavioral Health Act, which requires the Department of Mental Health and Hygiene to coordinate with the United States Department of Veteran Affairs for the purpose of connecting veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan with behavioral health services. The bill also established the Veterans’ Behavioral Health Advisory Board, which is tasked with analyzing the behavioral health needs of veterans and their families, as well as identifying deficiencies in available services and facilitating collaboration amongst the various organizations involved, such as the hospitals that provide the health services.
In 2006, Delegate James worked hard to pass legislation that would protect families as they honor fallen soldiers and prevent protesters from interrupting private funeral ceremonies. While there are some who disparage the service provided by the men and women of our armed forces, Mary-Dulany does all she can to protect and honor these heroic individuals. Delegate James was honored to receive an award from the Department of Maryland Marine Corp League for her work in passing this important legislation.
In 2004, Delegate James seized an opportunity to further the interests of Maryland’s veterans by aiding in the passage of two pieces of legislation aimed at improving access to education for our veterans here in the State. The first piece of legislation which Mary-Dulany co-sponsored exempted military personnel from paying nonresident tuition at public institutions of higher learning in the State. This exemption applies not only to active duty members of the armed forces, but also the immediate family of active duty members and honorably discharged veterans.
The second piece of legislation that Mary-Dulany co-sponsored that year established a policy of reciprocity between Maryland’s public schools and schools in other parts of the country, intended to facilitate easy transfer of academic records of school-aged dependents of military personnel. The purpose of this legislation is to ensure that children who change schools due to their parent’s military assignment undergo as smooth a transition as possible both into and out of Maryland schools.
As a mechanism to help military personnel establish a stable occupation here in Maryland, Delegate James fully supported the passage of the Veteran’s Full Employment Act, which expedites the professional and occupational licensing process for military personnel and their spouses who relocate to Maryland from elsewhere in the United States. The Act also provides that veterans receive credit for applicable military training.
Mary-Dulany has helped many constituents who are veterans both of recent conflicts and past wars. Recently, Delegate James assisted a constituent who was having trouble with a hospital and the benefits he earned as a result of fighting for our country in Vietnam. With Mary-Dulany’s help, he was able to get the medical treatment he deserved as a military hero. This is just one example of more than a decade of helping veterans and their families.