AUSTIN – The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), along with State Representative Joe Farias and the Texas Veterans Commission (TVC), today announced a new opportunity for customers to make voluntary contributions to the Fund for Veterans’ Assistance (FVA) when they apply for an original or renewal driver license or personal identification card.
“For more than 200 years, courageous men and women have joined the U.S. Military and selflessly fulfilled a pledge to serve and protect this great nation at all costs,” said DPS Director Steven McCraw. “This donation option is a new way for Texas residents to honor and assist veterans across the state, and we’re proud to facilitate this effort.”
In 2013, the 83rd Texas Legislature passed House Bill 633, authored by Rep. Joe Farias, which allows Texans to make donations to the FVA during driver license transactions.
“I am proud that our efforts in the 83rd Legislature have lead up to this moment today. The work that the Texas Veterans Commission and Department of Public Safety have done to implement this new program will help the veterans of Texas for years to come,” said Rep. Farias. “This action will allow the people of Texas to donate to a fund that directly impacts veterans’ lives.”
“We need to honor the sacrifice made by our veterans and military families,” said State Sen. Wendy Davis, who sponsored the legislation during the 83rd Legislative Session. “I am proud to have pushed to create another venue for Texans to show their generosity and make a financial contribution to our nation’s heroes who have already sacrificed so much.”
The donation option is available for customers who apply in-person at a DPS driver license office and during online transactions. Customers can only make donations when applying for an original or renewal driver license/identification card – not during other transactions, such as changes of address or card replacements. Applicants can choose how much they wish to donate, and the contribution must be in whole dollar amounts and must be paid at the time of the transaction.
“Through the generous contributions of all those interested in supporting veterans, we can make a significant difference in the lives of Texas veterans and their families,” said Thomas P. Palladino, executive director for the Texas Veterans Commission. “On behalf of the Texas Veterans Commission and Texas veterans, we thank the Texas Legislature for creating this donation option and our partners at DPS for their hard work leading its implementation.”
The TVC administers the FVA, and awards reimbursement grants to eligible charitable organizations, local government agencies and Veterans Service Organizations that provide direct services to Texas veterans and their families.
DPS also collects contributions to the Blindness Education Screening and Treatment Program, and Glenda Dawson Donate Life – Texas Registry (organ and tissue donor program) during the driver license and identification card application process.
For more information on how to donate to the FVA, please visit http://www.tvc.texas.gov/Fund-for-Veterans-Assistance.aspx. For additional information about the FVA, please contact Cheri Smith at 512-463-4828.
To find a driver license office near you, visit www.dps.texas.gov/administration/driver_licensing_control/rolodex/search.asp. Residents, who are eligible and want to renew a driver license or identification card online, can visit Texas.gov.