Martin backs bill bringing back honor guards at military funerals

March 6, 2017

PLAINVILLE — State Sen. Henri Martin, R-Bristol, has voiced his support for a bill to restore funding for honor guards at military funerals and is working to make that funding permanent.

As co-chairman of the legislature’s Veterans Affairs Committee, Martin said he was “deeply disturbed” by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s actions to “strip funding for the honor guard.”

“Connecticut’s veterans put their lives on the line and sacrificed for our country’s freedoms,” said Martin. “It’s unconscionable that the state would deny them this last honor they so rightfully deserve.”

Martin said that this is the second year Malloy has tried to strip funding for honor guards at veterans’ funerals in the name of balancing the state budget.

“The state faces serious financial problems,” he said. “But I fail to see how cutting $326,000 from military funerals will bring our state back into the black. We can craft a responsible, balanced state budget and still provide our veterans with the honors they deserve.”

House Bill 7181, An Act Honoring Deceased Veterans, was the subject of a public hearing before the Veterans Committee Feb. 28. Martin said that it was unanimously supported by veterans and veterans’ groups.

“After the sacrifices our veterans have made, they should not have to travel to Hartford every year to ask the state to fund the funeral honors they deserve,” he said.

Residents who wish to submit testimony in favor of the bill can email vatestimony@ctcga.ct.gov and put “Veterans’ Funerals” in the subject line.

— State Sen. Henri Martin