New Jersey veterans, who live in continuing care centers, who were honorably discharged from the military, will now be eligible to receive a $250 property tax deduction thanks to New Jersey voters.  On Election Day, this past Tuesday, 75.60 percent of New Jerseyans voted to extend the $250 property tax deduction to all veterans regardless of whether they are homeowners.  Surviving spouses of honorably discharged veterans, who live in continuing care centers, will also be eligible to receive the tax deduction.  Before this historic vote, only veterans, who were homeowners, were able to get the $250 property tax deduction.

According to the 2012 US Census brief, there are 12.4 million veterans who are 65 years or older.  Many of the veterans who are 65 years or older are World War II veterans, Korean War veterans, Vietnam War veterans and Persian Gulf veterans.  Some of these veterans may decide to move to continuing care centers in order to get the medical care and emotional support that they need in order to live life to the fullest.

The $250 tax deduction will certainly help our aging veterans since assisted living costs an average of $48,000 per year.  Continuing care centers outnumber nursing homes in the US.  There are 22,000 assisted living centers in the US.  There are 713,300 people who live in continuing care centers and includes our bravest Americans as well.

Even though New Jersey is the third state in the nation to pay the highest state-local tax at 12.2 percent, most New Jerseyans do not mind contributing a part of their income tax to help our veterans.  The $250 tax deduction will also be funded by a sales tax and casino revenues.

In order for all New Jersey veterans to get the tax deduction, Section 1 (3) of Article VII of the New Jersey Constitution was amended.  Many politicians, democrats as well as republicans, supported the measure that would enable all honorably discharged veterans to receive the $250 tax deduction.

This Monday, November 11th, we will celebrate Veteran’s Day.  There will be many patriotic parades and activities to honor our finest Americans.  However, the best way to thank our veterans, for all the sacrifices that they made, is to help them have the best quality of life.  Since they fought so hard to preserve our freedom, our aging veterans and disabled veterans deserve the best quality of medical care and living accommodations.  Kudos to New Jersey for helping New Jersey veterans and hope that every state follows their example.