On this week’s “Florida NewsMakers” program, Col. Mike Prendergast, the Executive Director of the Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs, sits down with Sachs Media Group’s Trimmel Gomes. The Department is working to connect Florida veterans with benefits they earned through their service, and Prendergast discusses efforts to reduce high unemployment among veterans and a renewed push to provide them with a break on in-state college tuition.
With Veterans Day bringing attention to former service members, Gov. Rick Scott is urging companies to hire veterans by proclaiming November as “Hire a Veteran” month. Prendergast noted that employers who hire veterans make a sound business decision. “The nation has already invested tremendous time and treasure in training our veterans and using them during their time in service,” Prendergast tells Gomes. “They come back with a great set of skills, they are very disciplined, they’re highly motivated and they can do things at levels that folks that have been in the industry can’t keep pace with. It’s because of that, that they make great employees.” Prendergast says his top priority when the Legislature returns to Tallahassee in March is passage of legislation providing reduced in-state tuition for all veterans, and, “We’ve got great bipartisan support.” Prendergast addresses those issues and more on “Florida NewsMakers.”