ROMEOVILLE, Ill. – State Rep. Natalie Manley, D-Joliet, is supporting a legislative proposal that will fully fund survivor benefits for the families of fallen first responders and will prevent these families from having to wait for financial assistance due to depleted funds during the state budget’s fiscal year.
“Our first responders put their lives on the line every day to keep us safe. When these heroes make the ultimate sacrifice, it is our duty to ensure that their families are supported during their most difficult times,” Manley said. “This bill is just one way we can demonstrate our admiration and devotion to our first responders and their families. By getting them the benefits they need, we will support them in the ways they deserve.”
Currently, the Court of Claims Act allows only for a certain amount of funding to be set aside for families of fallen first responders, which can result in a long waiting period after a claim was filed because more funding needs to be passed by the General Assembly. House Bill 5785, sponsored by Manley, will rectify this issue by setting aside funding for these claims year-round, bypassing the previous step of waiting for further funding to be approved.
“During the most distressing times, our first responders are there to protect us, so we must do all that we can to honor their sacrifices by getting rid of the red tape that puts bureaucratic hurdles on their families,” Manley said. “I am proud to support our first responders and their families by seeing that this bill gets passed and implemented.”