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Disabled veterans eligible for free transit

Minnesota's disabled veterans are now able to use public transportation throughout Minnesota at no charge. The transit benefit was passed by the Legislature and signed into law by Governor Tim Pawlenty and took effect on July 1. Disabled veterans...

Minnesota's disabled veterans are now able to use public transportation throughout Minnesota at no charge.

The transit benefit was passed by the Legislature and signed into law by Governor Tim Pawlenty and took effect on July 1.

Disabled veterans simply need to show the proper identification card to bus operators of any fixed-route service in the state, including Metro Transit and suburban transit providers in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area as well as regular-route services in Duluth, St. Cloud, Rochester, Moorhead, East Grand Forks and Mankato.

There are approximately 50,000 disabled veterans in Minnesota. The free ride benefit also extends to a personal care attendant who may be assisting a disabled veteran as they travel.

In the metro area, this benefit is also available on the Hiawatha light-rail line and on the Northstar commuter rail line, which will begin operations late this year between Big Lake and downtown Minneapolis.

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"The transit providers in Greater Minnesota are an important part of our multi-modal transportation system. I appreciate that the fixed-route transit providers are acknowledging the contributions of our disabled veterans by offering them free service," said Tom Sorel, commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Transportation, which oversees and funds transit service outside of the metro area.

To qualify for the free rides, disabled veterans must show a Veterans Identification Card, or VIC issued by a VA Medical Center with the words "Service Connected" or the initials "SC" below the photo. The cards are available at the VA medical centers in Minneapolis and St. Cloud. For information, call (612) 467-1991 or visit http://www.va.gov/healtheligibility/application/IDCard.asp .

Related Topics: VETERANS
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