Murt Backs Appointment of Veteran to Civil Service Commission

Rep. Tom Murt (R-Montgomery/Philadelphia) today spoke on the House floor in support of House Bill 378, which would require that one member of the Civil Service Commission be a military veteran.   

The bill passed overwhelmingly. 

“Our veterans are living in a period of great unease,” Murt said.  “They are fighting on many fronts.   Every day they put their health and, in many cases, their very lives on the line in places like Afghanistan and Iraq.  They should not have to fight for jobs when they return to less hostile cities such as Scranton, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh.” 

A 2008 report by the auditor general found that the Veterans’ Preference Program, which was created to ensure veterans were being fairly considered for employment, had repeatedly failed in its mission.   

The auditor general found that the policies of the Civil Service Commission, which oversees the Veterans’ Preference Program, allowed several Commonwealth agencies to circumvent the hiring of qualified veterans. He found instances where veterans’ preferences were not granted in a timely manner, and that the commission was inadequately monitoring the agencies’ hiring practices.   

“Simply stated, the Civil Service Commission has not adequately administered the Veterans’ Preference Program,” Murt said.  “Clearly, changes need to be made.” 

As part of a remedy, the auditor general recommended at least one member of the Civil Service Commission be a veteran. House Bill 378 makes this a legal requirement.   

“The current rate of unemployment for our veterans is more than 15 percent,” Murt said. “We must do better for the men and women who have served our nation and the Commonwealth with such honor.”   

State Representative Thomas Murt
152nd District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Contact:  Rep. Murt’s Office 

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