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Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz traveled through Northwest Iowa Thursday, making stops in Arnolds Park, Sioux Center and Sioux City to discuss a new program, titled the-pretty-much-says-it-all Honor A Veteran.

Schultz kicked off Honor A Veteran public awareness with a Memorial Day event at Camp Dodge in central Iowa, and will travel the state to get the word out over coming weeks. In the program, people can register onto the Secretary of State website and type in a tribute to a relative or friend who is a veteran. The tributes can be searched by online readers by town, military branch or name.

Since some older people wanting to honor vets may not be computer savvy, Schultz has dropped off postcards in VFW's and other places that can be handwritten upon and mailed to be added to the data base.

When people in veterans organizations hear about the program, they are very enthused, said Schultz. Those who provide Honor A Veteran messages get a lapel pin he encourages people to wear on election days.

Schultz is the Republican secretary of state many may know primarily for his push to enact a requirement of presenting identification in order to vote at polls. He also talked about another way he is supporting the military, by having a better system for helping Iowa military personnel overseas to vote.

Schultz said he has broadened the people who get ballots when serving outside the U.S. Formerly, the practice had been that only personnel serving in war zones got absentee ballots, but now everyone overseas will get them.

The great thing about the change, Schultz said, is that more military people from Iowa will undoubtedly vote.

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County and education reporter

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