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CARMEL, N.Y. – Dozens of veterans attended a roundtable Saturday morning at the Carmel Town Hall with the goal of helping New York State vets find employment or start their own business..

The event, known as “Jobs for Heroes Roundtable” was hosted by State Sen. Greg Ball (R, C, I – Patterson) and U.S. Representative Sean Patrick Maloney (D – Cold Spring).

The roundtable was open to all veterans, and touched upon Ball’s proposed legislation that would create a state contract preference for service-connected, disabled veteran-owned small businesses in New York State.

“Providing this opportunity to our heroes is common sense,” Ball said. “New York State is behind the over 40 other states that have already enacted this [type of legislation]. One in seven veterans are self-employed or small business owners. The same attributes that make these people so vital to defending our freedom are the same hard-earned intangibles that make them exceptional at running their businesses and creating jobs. We have been trailing the nation on this front for far too long.”

Maloney noted that more than three million veterans have returned from service and started a small business.

“We must do all that we can to support our heroes,” he said.

Former chief executive officer of HBO and current Yorktown resident Bill Nelson also joined the roundtable. Nelson is a Vietnam combat veteran who supports efforts to help veterans and their families through his participation in veteran-focused charities.

“I believe it is the obligation of every U.S. state to follow the lead of the federal government in providing a contract preference to small businesses owned by our service-connected disabled veterans,” Nelson said. “Forty-four states have done so over the past years. It is time for New York to join in as well.”

Joseph Krulder, a service-connected disabled veteran from Drexel Hamilton, LLC, also attended the roundtable. Drexel Hamilton is a full-service institutional broker-dealer founded on the principle of offering meaningful employment opportunities to disabled veterans desiring a career in financial services.

“New York’s veterans aren’t looking for a hand-out; they want a fair shot at accessing meaningful career opportunities that allow them to utilize their education, training and skills developed during their service to our nation,” said James Cahill, president of Drexel Hamilton, LLC. “Drexel Hamilton will continue to work with Senator Ball to advocate for veteran-owned businesses in New York State, and we are grateful that Gov. Cuomo is also focused on this important issue.”

Eugene Parrotta, chair of 40th Senate District Veterans Advisory Council, said he believes New York State is losing its entrepreneurs who are looking for a friendly economic environment.

“This bill is not only equitable and fair but is also an honorable and much-deserved benefit for all veterans,” Parrotta said. (ARTICLE)

About Greg Ball

Assemblyman Greg Ball (R, C, I – Patterson) is the Senator for New York State's 40th district. A former Vice President of Exceed International Development Corporation, Ball holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from the United States Air Force Academy, is currently completing his Masters Thesis of Liberal Studies in International Affairs at Georgetown University, and received an honorable discharge in 2005 at the rank of Captain after service as an active duty officer in the United States Air Force. View all posts by Greg Ball →
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