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Legislature Passes Bill Helping Military Members

Friday, March 29, 2013, Juneau, Alaska – Alaska veterans with experience driving military vehicles can more easily earn Commercial Drivers’ Licenses and get civilian jobs under legislation that passed the Alaska Legislature today.

House Bill 46, sponsored by Representative Dan Saddler, R-JBER/Eagle River, directs the Alaska Department of Administration to adopt regulations mirroring the new federal law that allows states to waive the road skills test for recent veterans who gained driving experience in uniform.

“More than 1,200 highly-trained Alaskans leave service and return home each month, and we must retain the benefits of their experience in the civilian economy,” Saddler said. “Budget cuts and sequestration will increase their numbers, and HB 46 is a powerful tool for helping these veterans get jobs, and helping private businesses find qualified folks to fill their driving jobs. I appreciate my colleagues in the Senate and my good friend Fred Dyson for carrying the bill.”

To be eligible for a waiver of the CDL skills test, applicants under HB 46 must have spent the last two or more years driving the kind of equipment they expect to use in a civilian job, have worked as military drivers in the past 90 days, and have driving records clear of suspension or revocation, major or recent accidents, or arrests involving drugs or alcohol and driving. Applicants must still pass the knowledge and physical test portions of the CDL application process.

HB 46 passed the Senate unanimously today. The bill passed the Alaska House unanimously March 1, and will be transmitted to the governor for signature.

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