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The Missouri Senate on Tuesday passed a bill that would create a voluntary cancer benefits pool for firefighters who get cancer.
S.B. 45, which passed 30 to 2, adds new language to the state’s firefighter presumption bill establishing a “voluntary firefighter cancer benefits pool,” stating that the pool shall provide the minimum benefits specified by an established board of trustees of the pool to covered individuals, based on the award level of the cancer at the time of diagnosis, after the employer becomes a participant.
The bill includes a number of stipulations on benefits.
It states that a payment may be made from the pool to a covered individual for up to $25,000 for rehabilitative or vocational training, and employment services and educational training related to the cancer diagnosis, and up to $10,000 if the covered individual incurs cosmetic disfigurement costs resulting from cancer.
The bill also states that if the cancer is diagnosed as terminal cancer, the firefighter may receive a lump-sum payment of $25,000 as an accelerated payment toward the benefits due.
The bill states that the benefits would apply to those with at least five years of hazardous duty as a firefighter and within 15 years of a cancer diagnosis, was exposed to a defined carcinogen, and is not older than 70.
The bill now heads to the Missouri House of Representatives.
A Missouri bill proposes the establishment of a voluntary firefighter cancer benefits trust.