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House Co-Sponsorship Memoranda

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House of Representatives
Session of 2015 - 2016 Regular Session


Posted: October 26, 2015 04:04 PM
From: Representative Jeff C. Wheeland
To: All House members
Subject: Enforcement Officer Disability Benefits Law
Please join me in co-sponsoring legislation adding enforcement officers and investigators of both the Pennsylvania Game Commission and the Fish and Boat Commission to the Enforcement Officer Disability Benefits Law, also known as the Heart and Lung Act.

Employees covered under this law receive temporary salary, medical and hospital expenses if injured or contract certain diseases while performing official duties. Payments are drawn from moneys appropriated from the respective employer.

Those currently covered by the act include the state police, LCB enforcement officers and investigators, capitol police, parole agents and enforcement officers of the Board of Probation and Parole, correction officers in the Department of Corrections (DOC), psychiatric security aides in the Department of Human Services and the DOC, drug enforcement and special agents in the Attorney General’s office, Delaware River Port Authority police, and salaried policemen, firefighters and park guards of any local government, and sheriffs and deputy sheriffs.

Currently, if a Wildlife or Waterways Conservation Officer (WCO) is injured on the job, the officer would have to take sick leave or be placed on workers compensation until recovered.

Wildlife or Waterways Conservation Officers are required to wear body armor and carry shotguns due to the dangers and hazards faced every day. Besides their regular duties, WCO’s assist during natural disasters, render assistance to state and local police, and serve arrest warrants.

By including WCO’s to the list of employees covered under this act, they would be eligible for comparable benefits afforded to many others charged with enforcing the laws of the Commonwealth.

Thank you for your consideration.

Introduced as HB1705