3.There is established in the Department of Military and Veterans' Affairs the "Gold Star Family Counseling Program." The purpose of this program is to link mental health care professionals with Gold Star family members to facilitate the provision of mental health counseling free of charge to the Gold Star family members. The Adjutant General of the Department of Military and Veterans' Affairs shall create and implement the "Gold Star Family Counseling Program" as follows.
a.The department shall recruit mental health care professionals to donate professional counseling hours to provide mental health counseling to Gold Star family members. The department may coordinate the recruitment efforts with the federal Department of Veterans' Affairs.
b.The department shall coordinate with the federal Department of Veterans Affairs to maintain a list of mental health care professionals who are available to provide professional mental health counseling hours to Gold Star family members.
c.The department shall maintain and distribute the list of available mental health care professionals on a Statewide basis and shall distribute the list of available mental health care professionals to each county Veteran Service office for the distribution thereof.
d.The department shall create a system for monitoring and verifying the donated hours to facilitate the tax credit provided to mental health care professionals pursuant to section 6 of P.L.2017, c.174 (C.54A:4-16).
e.The department shall provide documentation annually to the mental health care professional for submission to the Department of the Treasury to verify the amount of tax credit the mental health care professional is eligible to request annually pursuant to section 6 of P.L.2017, c.174 (C.54A:4-16). The amount of annual tax credit shall be determined by the department as the sum of the hours of donated counseling provided to the Gold Star family member multiplied by the documented compensation rate applied to these hours. To determine the compensation rate, the department shall use the calendar year TRICARE rate for the service provided in the geographic location in which the service is provided. The department shall limit the cumulative hours which are authorized for the annual tax credit to a minimum of 20 hours and a maximum of 40 hours per year, per professional.
L.2017, c.174, s.3.