Kent County considers asking voters for dedicated veteran millage

May 8, 2014

World War II veterans from west Michigan on a trip to Washington D.C. in November 2013. (file photo)
Credit Lindsey Smith / Michigan Radio

Like a lot of counties in Michigan, Kent County uses money out of its general fund to pay for services for veterans who live there. Right now that amounts to $8 per veteran. As a comparison, Oakland County spends more than three times as much per veteran. Livingston County spends nearly seven times as much.

The millage would cost the owner of a home worth $100,000 about $2.50 a year. It would raise $1 million its first year to pay for emergency services for vets, improve outreach to veterans who qualify for services but don’t know it or don’t understand how to apply for them, and it would more than double the amount of staff time available to help vets with federal claims.

A subcommittee of the Kent County Board of Commissioners approved the ballot initiative unanimously Thursday. It heads to the full board for review later this month. If approved, voters could see the ballot measure in November.