by admin on Tuesday, May 12th, 2015 | Comments Off on Spread the word: Important News for CT Firefighters from the CSFA lobbyist at the State Capitol
A Special Note from Ted Schroll, Jr., May 12, 2015:
I have been asked by the UPFFA to make contact with as many of our members as possible requesting some assistance. The subject bill is the bill that would provide for workers’ comp coverage for firefighters who contract certain cancers. They would be considered job-related. Your municipality could contest the claim, but THEY would have to prove that it was NOT fire service related.
As we expected there have been a few speed bumps along the way, but the bill has survived two separate committees and is currently on the House calendar awaiting further action. It also is being co-sponsored by more than 40 legislators, something you don’t normally see before a bill is passed. The speed bumps have been caused by a negative editorial in the Hartford Courant on 5/6. Also, today’s CT Mirror had a news article that pretty much explained the issues; not very positive, but not totally negative. It also has been mentioned that a major municipal lobbying organization has contacted legislators asking them to “kill” the bill as it would be a costly municipal mandate.
Please be aware that this bill would provide coverage for volunteer firefighters as well as career/paid firefighters. There has been some mention about various funding mechanisms “especially for VOLUNTEER departments”. To date the UPFFA has held to the premise that the fires are the same for both paid and volunteer firefighters. Also note that if you were to contract any of these certain cancers, without this benefit, there will not be a paycheck at home for your family.
What is needed will only take each and every one of you no more than 5-10 minutes of your time. We are asking each of you to contact your local legislator by email and ask them to support YOU by voting to pass this important benefit for firefighters. Not a letter, just an email. Everyone has a local Representative and a Senator. The language can be the same for each. Is it not worth your time to obtain this benefit? Maybe get a little peace of mind for your spouse and children. AND, if you are fortunate, YOU WILL NOT NEED THIS BENEFIT AT ALL!!!!!!
Time is critical. The bill will not come up for a vote until the UPFFA Legislative Rep can prove to the leadership that the votes are forthcoming. Right now he needs approximately 4-5 votes for a simple majority, but could use a few more for good measure. The General Assembly adjourns on 6/3, just over 3 weeks from now, and the bill has to pass both the House & Senate.
For those who may control an email “tree” within their group or Association, can you please pass this along.
P. S. For those who may be interested, there is more information in the CT Mirror news article.