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NO. 33.  AN ACT RELATING TO SURVIVORS OF EMERGENCY PERSONNEL.

(S.28)

It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:

Sec. 1.  20 V.S.A. chapter 181 is amended to read:

Chapter 181.  Benefits for the Survivors of

Firefighters emergency personnel

§ 3171.  DEFINITIONS

For purposes of this chapter:

(1)  “Board” means the firefighters’ emergency personnel survivors benefit review board.

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(3)  “Firefighter” shall have the meaning provided in subdivision 3151(3) of this title. “Emergency personnel” means:

(A)  firefighters as defined in subdivision 3151(3) of this title;

(B)  ambulance service, emergency medical, first responder service, and volunteer personnel as defined in section 2651 of Title 24.

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(7)  “Survivor” means a spouse, child, or parent of a firefighter emergency personnel.

§ 3172.  FIREFIGHTERS’ EMERGENCY PERSONNEL SURVIVORS

BENEFIT REVIEW BOARD

(a)  There is created the firefighters’ emergency personnel survivors benefit review board which shall consist of the state treasurer or designee, the attorney general or designee, the executive director of the Vermont fire service training council or designee, and one member of the public to represent the interests of emergency personnel appointed by the governor for a term of two years.  Survivors of a firefighter who dies emergency personnel, employed by or who volunteer for the state of Vermont, a county or municipality of the state, or a nonprofit entity which provides services in the state, who die in the line of duty or dies of an occupation-related illness may request the board award a monetary benefit under section 3173 of this title.  The board shall be responsible for determining whether to award monetary benefits under section 3173.  A decision to award monetary benefits shall be made by unanimous vote of the board, and shall be made within 60 days after the receipt of all information necessary to enable the board to determine eligibility.  The board may request any information necessary for the exercise of its duties under this section.  Nothing in this section shall prevent the board from initiating the investigation or determination of a claim before being requested by a survivor or employer of a firefighter emergency personnel.

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(c)  If the board decides to award a monetary benefit, the benefit shall be paid to the surviving spouse or, if the firefighter emergency personnel had no spouse at the time of death, to the surviving child, or equally among surviving children.  If the deceased firefighter emergency personnel is not survived by a spouse or child, the benefit shall be paid to a surviving parent, or equally between surviving parents.  If the deceased firefighter emergency personnel is not survived by a spouse, children, or parents, the board shall not award a monetary benefit under this chapter.

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§ 3173.  MONETARY BENEFIT

(a)  The survivors of a firefighter emergency personnel who dies while in the line of duty or from an occupation-related illness may apply for a payment of $50,000.00 from the state.

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§ 3175.  FIREFIGHTERS’ EMERGENCY PERSONNEL SURVIVORS                                           BENEFIT EXPENDABLE TRUST FUND

(a)  The firefighters’ emergency personnel survivors benefit expendable trust fund is established in the office of the state treasurer for the purpose of the payment of claims distributed pursuant to this chapter.  The trust fund shall be comprised of comprise appropriations made by the general assembly and contributions or donations from any other source.  All balances in the fund at the end of the fiscal year shall be carried forward.  Interest earned shall remain in the fund.

(b)  The treasurer’s annual financial report to the governor and the general assembly shall contain an accounting of receipts, disbursements, and earnings of the fund, and a recommended appropriation to the fund for the upcoming fiscal year.

Approved:  May 25, 2005



Published by:

The Vermont General Assembly
115 State Street
Montpelier, Vermont


www.leg.state.vt.us