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Retention bonuses for highly skilled TN National Guard members approved

The General Assembly unanimously approved legislation authorizing bonuses for Tennessee National Guard members serving in critical roles this week.

House Bill 2088,  sponsored by House Majority Leader William Lamberth, R-Portland, and co-sponsored by State Rep. Sam Whitson, R-Franklin, authorizes the Tennessee Department of Military to create a critical skills retention bonus program to award National Guard members who continue to serve.

“(This bill) allows the National Guard to establish a board to help recruit and retain those national guard members and critical combat skills that we need,” Whitson said Monday.

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The board will research and identify critical job skills that if left unmanned, would pose a risk to the department’s ability to respond when called upon. The group would then provide incentive amount recommendations on each job skill, up to $10,000.

House Bill 2088 also ensures that if a state employee is called to serve and their military job pays less than their civilian job, the state will pay the difference so that the employee does not suffer from lost wages while serving our state or nation.

The legislation will now head to Gov. Bill Lee’s desk to be signed into law.

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