The Wayne County Veterans Affairs (WCVA) office is asking area businesses to give something back to veterans.

The Wayne County Veterans Affairs (WCVA) office is asking area businesses to give something back to veterans.

At the Aug. 25 meeting of the Wayne County board of Commissioners, WCVA Director Tom McDonnell (USMC Ret.) announced the Wayne County Veterans’ Discount Program initiative, asking the Commissioners’ support in getting the program off the ground.

McDonnell says the plan is to solicit area businesses that would be interested in offering veterans a special discount on goods or services, discounts that would be obtained through use of a county issued photo ID card issued to each veteran.

“This is a voluntary program we’re just trying to get started,” McDonnell said, “We’re asking area merchants to call the Veterans Affairs office with the discounts they would like to offer veterans. We will keep a list of all of them. When we’ve got enough, phase two would be asking veterans to enroll by coming in with their DD214 or honorable discharge papers and a photo ID. We’ll get them enrolled, then they will go over to the Sheriff’s office to have their ID made. From there, we’ll keep a list of all the discounts on our WCVA website and here in the office.”

McDonnell said the list of discounts would contain the business’ names, phone number, type of discount and any restrictions or conditions on it. Once put together, it would then be updated as more businesses join.

“Pike County has done very well with it,” McDonnell said, “They’ve had theirs going for a while and they have businesses from all over the place participating. It doesn’t have to just be Wayne County businesses.”

McDonnell says the Pocono/Lake and Southern Wayne Chambers of Commerce have all been given an opportunity to participate in the program. The program is being developed in partnership with the Wayne County Chamber.

“The commissioners have the ongoing respect and appreciation of veterans in this area,’ McDonnell said, “We couldn’t do this without the outstanding support they’ve given us over the years. People don’t understand that things don’t happen in a vacuum, it takes a lot of dedication. And the commissioners have shown that dedication to us time and again.”

Businesses that would like to participate in the budding program are asked to call the Wayne County Veterans Affairs office at 570-253-5970, extension 3114 to request an application. The WCVA office is open from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Leave a message if you cannot reach someone and your call will be returned.

Once the list of participating businesses is sufficiently long to make managing the program worthwhile, the WCVA will announce the start of phase 2, contacting veterans to enroll in the program and get their veterans photo ID.