Veterans who retire after at least 20 years of active duty must declare 50 percent of their military retirement pay on their state income tax returns, but under a bill introduced today by top State Senate Democrat Martin Looney, they would no longer have to declare any of it.
"Thirteen states with a state income tax now offer a 100 percent exemption for military retirement pay, including our neighbors in Massachusetts and New York," State Sen. Looney told the legislature's Veterans Affairs Committee.
Members of veterans service organizations such as VFW state commander Greg Smith attended a news conference alongside State Sen. Looney and other Senate Democrats on Tuesday.
"This bill really shows those folks that have served our country and the communities throughout Connecticut how important the citizens of Connecticut think they are," Smith said.
Veterans' activists and the Democrats painted the bill as an effort to keep veterans from leaving Connecticut in favor of states that have no income tax.
A Republican member of the Veterans Affairs Committee, State Rep. Pam Staneski, declined to comment on the bill but said she hoped it would be something she could support.