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GOV. CASEY CALLS FOR VOTER APPROVAL OF VETERANS' VICTORY BONUS

 GOV. CASEY CALLS FOR VOTER APPROVAL OF VETERANS' VICTORY BONUS
 GETTYSBURG, Pa., Feb. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- While laying a wreath at the Pennsylvania Monument on the Gettysburg Battlefield, Gov. Robert P. Casey today called for approval of his proposed $10.2 million victory bonus for all Persian Gulf war veterans.
 "Our Desert Storm veterans and their families cannot be fully compensated for their service and losses, but we owe them a token in recognition of their services," Casey said at a ceremony honoring Pennsylvania's Civil War dead.
 The governor was in Gettysburg as part of a program recognizing this community as Pennsylvania's Capital for a Day.
 Casey has asked the state legislature to approve a referendum for the April 28 primary that would:
 -- Reward those who served in the Persian Gulf, as well as personnel from the National Guard and Reserves who served on active duty in supporting roles, with a $250 bonus;
 -- Give prisoners of war and beneficiaries of deceased veterans an additional $4,000;
 -- Provide $1.5 million to erect at Fort Indiantown Gap National Cemetery, Lebanon County, a monument to honor all veterans.
 State-paid bonuses have been approved in the past for veterans of every major war or conflict since the Spanish-American War.
 During the ceremony at the 80-year-old Pennsylvania Monument, which honors the 35,000 Pennsylvanians who fought at Gettysburg during the Civil War, Casey said the state has "a sacred obligation to help our veterans and their families."
 The governor said Pennsylvania is investing $23 million this year for veterans homes. The facilities in Spring City, Chester County, and Hollidaysburg, Blair County, are being expanded this fiscal year by a total of 340 beds. A new home is being built in Scranton the following fiscal year, adding 200 more beds. In all, the system will have nearly 1,200 beds by 1994.
 "In this simple and symbolic tribute of laying a wreath, we join together to say: we remember all those Pennsylvanians who fought and all those Pennsylvanians who died," Casey said.
 /delval/
 -0- 2/21/92
 /CONTACT: Charles M. Tocci of the Commonwealth News Bureau, 717-783-1116/ CO: Office of the Governor ST: Pennsylvania IN: SU:


MK -- PH013 -- 1359 02/21/92 11:37 EST
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Date:Feb 21, 1992
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