The Purpose of the Veterans in Government is to assist Government agencies and Institutions of Higher Education in navigating the Veteran’s Employment Preference and simplify Veteran Hiring practices. In doing so, many Government Agencies have actively participated in the development of materials and resources for Veterans interested in obtaining employment in the government sector.
The Texas Veterans Commission will continue to provide information and dates for the Veterans Hiring Open House Events (both Regional and Annual), State Application Workshops and materials to assist our Veterans in the development of their State Application.
TVC’s vision is to enable Government Agencies to identify and capitalize on the skills of our men and women that have served our great nation, while enhancing the abilities of our Veterans to best put forth their knowledge, skills, and abilities in the application process.
State Agency Recruiting
State agency hiring authorities can sometimes find it difficult to navigate the numerous resources available to supplement an efficient and effective Veterans employment program. To assist state agencies with this problem and help them reach their Veteran employment goals, the Texas Veterans Commission (TVC) appointed a Veterans Employment Liaison-Public Entity (VEL-PE). Working with the VEL-PE, agencies can develop a multi-channel recruiting strategy that takes advantage of the plethora of resources dedicated for Veterans employment. The VEL-PE can also provide technical assistance with the Veterans’ Preference Law.
Wartime veterans have preference in employment with State agencies or offices, as do widows and orphans of those killed on active duty. State law requires State agencies must practice veterans’ preference with the goal of reaching 20% veteran employment within the agency.
Non-retired veterans who are employed by the State of Texas are entitled to claim their active duty military time toward retirement, provided they present a proper request and pay to the Retirement System the specified amount of retirement contribution for up to 60 months military credit. Such contribution is paid at the rate which was applicable at the time the employed veteran first was covered by the state Retirement System, plus any accrued interest. The State Law, Texas Government Code Chapter 657.001-657.009, is posted below.
Texas Government Code
Review the states law code.
Veterans Preference Advisor
This Advisor is designed to help you learn more about veterans’ preference. To determine your rights and responsibilities, select from the list below. To ensure an accurate understanding of veterans’ preference, we encourage you to go through all of the sections in the Advisor that are applicable for you.
The Office of Personnel Management (OPM)
The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) administers entitlement to veterans’ preference in employment under title 5, United States Code, and oversees other statutory employment requirements in titles 5 and 38. (Title 38 also governs Veterans’ entitlement to benefits administered by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
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Priority of Service
The Department of Labor and the State of Texas recognize and salute the men and women who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces. In honor of our “Heroes at Home” numerous employment and training programs are available to identify, inform, and deliver comprehensive services to all veterans and qualified spouses of veterans.
Veterans possess unique attributes and contribute important skills and resources to the workplace, and for this and other reasons, the Department of Labor has recently reinforced its implementation of Priority of Service for veterans and qualified spouses of veterans.
Priority of Service means that all veterans and qualified spouses of veterans are entitled to precedence over non-veterans in obtaining the full array of employment, training, and placement services, as well as Priority of Service pertaining to any applicable eligibility requirements for those programs and services. We encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity and visit your nearest Workforce Center to inquire about the specific entitlements your veteran status affords you.
To qualify for Priority of Service, you must fall in one of the following categories:
- Veteran. A veteran is any person who served in the active military, naval, or air service, and who was discharged or released there from under conditions other than dishonorable.
- Qualified Spouse. A qualified spouse is the spouse of:
- any veteran who died of a service-connected disability.
- any member of the Armed Forces serving on active duty who, at the time of application for Priority of Service is listed in one or more of the following categories and has been so listed for a total of more than 90 days:
- missing in action.
- captured in line of duty by a hostile force or,
- forcibly detained or interned in line of duty by a foreign government or power.
- any veteran who has a total disability resulting from a service-connected disability.
- any veteran who died while a disability (as outlined in the previous bullet) was in existence.
To qualify for Veteran Representative Services, veterans must meet the following definition:
Veteran. A veteran is any person who:
- served on active duty for a period of more than 180 days and was discharged or released there from with other than a dishonorable discharge;
- was discharged or released from active duty because of a service-connected disability; or
- as a member of a reserve component under an order to active duty, served on active duty during a period or war or in a campaign or expedition for which a campaign badge is authorized, and was discharged or released from such duty with other than a dishonorable discharge.
Qualified Spouse. A qualified spouse as defined above.
Please contact a Workforce Center Representative or a Veteran Employment Representatives (VER) at your local Workforce Center if you have any questions about eligibility for Priority of Service and/or you want information on the services and programs available to veterans and qualified spouses of veterans.
Re-employment Rights (USERRA)
A veteran is entitled to reemployment rights with his last employer when he is released from the Armed Forces of the United States, providing his absence is no longer than four years. The right of reemployment is available regardless of whether the veteran was, prior to service, employed by the State, county or city government, or by private industry.
Reemployment rights of veterans are now provided by both State and Federal laws. We have posted the State Law, Texas Government Code Chapter 613.001-613.006; and 613.021-613.023, Enforcement, is below.
Texas Government Code
Review the Texas Government Code Chapter 613.001-613.006; and 613.021-613.023.
The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA)
The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) protects service members’ reemployment rights when returning from a period of service in the uniformed services, including those called up from the reserves or National Guard, and prohibits employer discrimination based on military service or obligation. The U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (VETS) administers USERRA.
USERRA Information and Complaint Process
If you believe your USERRA rights may have been violated, or you are an employer seeking compliance assistance, you may consider one of the following options:
- Seek assistance from the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve www.esgr.org; 1-800-336-4590.
ESGR is a U.S. Department of Defense entity established in 1972 to promote cooperation and understanding between Reserve component members and their civilian employers and to assist in the resolution of conflicts arising from an employee’s military commitment. It operates through a network of thousands of volunteers throughout the nation and Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. ESGR assists in answering USERRA questions from employees and employers and attempts to informally resolve disputes.
- File a complaint with the U.S. Department of Labor, Veterans Employment & Training Service (DOL-VETS) http://www.dol.gov/vets/; 1-866-487-2365.
Information about USERRA, including an interactive guided program called the “USERRA elaws Advisor,” is available at: http://www.dol.gov/vets/programs/userra/main.htm.
The contact information for your local DOL-VETS office is available at:
The DOL-VETS USERRA complaint form, VETS-1010, and instructions for completing and submitting it, are available at:
If you choose to file a USERRA complaint, DOL-VETS will investigate and attempt to resolve it; if its efforts at resolution are unsuccessful, you may have the option of seeking representation from either OSC (if the complaint involves a federal executive agency, with certain limited exceptions) or the U.S. Department of Justice (if the complaint involves a state, local, or private employer).