Warner Robins City Council approved two new resolutions Monday night that they say will make it easier to hire and retain military veterans.
One council member even said the resolutions could help stop the city's rising crime numbers.
In two unanimous votes, the city of Warner Robins approved additional bonuses and benefits for men and women in uniform that work for the city, or that will be hired in the future.
David Wilson is a Vietnam veteran and lives in Warner Robins. He says it was a good day for his city.
“I feel very proud of this city for doing that, because there are so many times when somebody gets out of the military, they have few marketable skills other than maybe being a police officer or fireman or something like that and nobodies looking for them!” Wilson said after the meeting.
The resolutions give new city employees, that are also veterans, an additional vacation week in the first year of work and immediate access to the city's insurance plan.
Normally, there is a 60-day waiting period before new employees can enroll with the insurance coverage.
The other resolution gives financial bonuses to new employees based on their years of service in the United States Armed Forces.
Employees with 1-4 years of active-duty service would get $1,000.
8 years of active-duty service get $2,000.
12 years of active-duty service get $3,000.
16 years of active-duty service receive $4,000.
20 or more years would get you $5,000.
All of those are split over the first 5 years spent with the city.
It also will give additional pension benefits to veterans already working for the city.
Current employees will get 1-5 years of credited pension service based on their time spent in active duty.
Councilman Chuck Shaheen presented the resolutions and says it could help fight the city's crime.
“Hopefully, we can get more security forces to come to the city of Warner Robins. We've enticed them to come here, because it's a great place to work and then inevitably we reduce stress on our police officers, we come to 100 percent capacity in our police department and then we reduce crime,” Shaheen said after the meeting.
He said it was just another way city leaders could show appreciation for those who have served the country.
Shaheen also said he hopes this starts happening in other cities around Central Georgia as well.
Councilwoman Carolyn Robbins also helped with the resolutions
The pension portion of the resolution has to be reviewed before passing officially. All the other benefits go into effect immediately.
Shaheen said Warner Robins already employs 74 veterans.