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WHEREAS, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts takes tremendous pride in our men and women who valiantly served their state and their country in the Armed Forces; and
WHEREAS, the Commonwealth is in full realization of its moral and legal commitment to foster the economic and social security of all our people; and
WHEREAS, the Commonwealth recognizes that our veterans have special needs and often encounter social and economic obstacles as a result of their veteran status; and
WHEREAS, the Commonwealth hereby affirms its strong commitment to advance the opportunities of our veteran citizenry to assure equal opportunity in public and private employment, and to develop services which will enable all our veterans to maximize their participation in the social and economic activities of the Commonwealth;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Edward J. King, Governor of the Commonwealth by virtue of the authority vested in me as Supreme Executive Magistrate, do hereby order as follows:
1. There is hereby created a Committee, to be known as the Governor's Advisory Committee on Veterans' Affairs, to consist of eighteen (18) members who shall serve without compensation. The members of the Committee shall be appointed by the Governor, for a term coterminous with that of the Governor, and shall serve at the pleasure of the Governor.
The membership of the Committee shall consist of one representative from each of the following organizations, each of which are authorized to submit a nominee to the Governor: the American Legion, the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the Disabled American Veterans, the AMVETS, the Marine Corps League, the Polish American Veterans, the Italian American War Veterans, the Massachusetts Veterans' Service Agents Association, the Congressional Medal of Honor Society, the Jewish War Veterans, the Massachusetts Vietnam Era Veterans Association and the World War One Veterans.
From the membership, the Governor shall designate a Chairperson and Vice-Chairperson(s). They shall serve for a minimum of a one (1) year term. Any vacancies which may occur shall be filled by the Governor in the same manner as the prior appointment. In addition, the Commissioner of the Department of Education, the Chancellor of the Board of Higher Education, the Director of the Division of Social and Economic Opportunity, the Commissioner of Public Health, the Commissioner of Mental Health and the Commissioner of Veterans' Services, or their respective designees, shall serve as ex-officio members of the Committee.
2. The Committee is authorized and directed to conduct studies, investigations and research to advise the Governor on any considerations, issues and problems pertinent to the veterans of the Commonwealth. The Committee shall have, at a minimum, the following functions and responsibilities:
- to research and analyze all statutes of the Commonwealth and all governmental programs and regulations relating to the employment, education and health of veterans; and
- to investigate the need for new and expanded services that may be required for veterans, including education, counselling, training and retraining; and
- to labor in light of these recommendations in order to effectuate their implementation; and
- to use the human resources of the Committee to enlighten the citizens and elected and appointed public officials of the Commonwealth regarding the issues of importance to the veterans of the Commonwealth.
3. The Committee may form sub-committees from its own membership and is authorized to call upon any secretariat, office, department, board, commission, council or other agency of the executive branch of state government under my jurisdiction and any officer, member or employee thereof, to supply such statistical data, program reports and other information and materials as the Committee deems necessary or appropriate to perform its work, and they are authorized and directed to cooperate with the Committee and to furnish it with such information or assistance in connection with such review and analysis and in connection with effecting such recommendations as may be developed for the implementation thereof.
4. The Committee shall submit an annual written report to the Governor of its findings and recommendations to date.
5. This Order shall take effect immediately and shall continue in force until amended or revoked.
Given at the Executive Chamber in Boston this 8th day of August, in the year of Our Lord one thousand nine hundred and seventy-nine and of the independence of the United States of America, two hundred and four.
Edward J. King, Governor
Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Michael Joseph Connolly
Secretary of the Commonwealth