The Illinois Senate passed legislation Thursday to hire more veterans service officers in the state.
Senate Bill 82 would authorize $3.2 million in state funds for veterans organizations to hire service officers. It was sponsored by Sen. Martin Sandoval, D-Chicago.
Service officers help veterans apply for benefits such as Veterans Administration medical care. They work through organizations such as the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars.
The VFW has a backlog of 1,400 cases just in Chicago, an officer of that organization said several weeks ago.
With Thursday's 43-0 vote, the bill has now passed both legislative chambers and goes to the governor for his signature.