Bills Assisting Disabled Veterans, At-Risk Youth Pass House, Boback Says Members News March 31, 2021 Rep. Karen Boback (R-Lackawanna/Luzerne/Wyoming) announced the House passage of bills that would help support disabled veterans and at-risk youth in the Commonwealth. The bills were previously approved by the House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee, which Boback chairs. “One piece of legislation will prevent veterans’ compensation benefits from being counted as income for state programs with income thresholds,” said Boback. “It seeks to offer help to those who have fought for and defended us, which is why I felt it was necessary to reintroduce and push for its passage. I am grateful for the continued support this legislation sees and am eager for its passage in the Senate.” “I was also proud to promote Rep. Tim O’Neal’s (R-Washington) bill which aims to secure steady funding for the Keystone State Challenge Academy Account for the National Guard Youth Challenge Program. This program provides structured educational opportunities for at-risk youth across the Commonwealth. As an educator, I am fully aware of the value programs like this offer our youth. I will continue to look for ways that will offer help to our veterans and our Pennsylvania National Guard,” Boback added. House Bill 491 amends Title 51 to exclude veterans’ compensation benefits from income calculations for Commonwealth programs. It provides that 100% of a veteran’s disability compensation/pension may not be included as income for any state program. It also extends the exclusion to an unmarried surviving spouse. House Bill 803 establishes the Keystone State Challenge Academy Account as a restricted receipts account within the General Fund, which may include all monies deposited into the account from appropriations/transfers from the General Fund, private donations and federal funds and appropriated to the PA Department of Military and Veterans Affairs on a continuing basis.