Pence signs military relief fund changes into law

Gov. Mike Pence has signed into law a measure allowing more of Indiana's veterans and their families access to a fund that helps them pay for food, housing and other expenses.

The governor drew applause Thursday from Indiana National Guard members as he signed the bill during a ceremony at the Indiana War Memorial.

The measure will make about 26,000 Indiana veterans who served in the Armed Forces or National Guard after Sept. 11, 2001, eligible for grant payments through the state's Military Family Relief Fund starting July 1.

Pence told the gathering that eliminating the current three-year restriction on access to the fund is "the right thing to do."

The fund's money comes from the sales of military license plates. It has a balance of more than $7 million.

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