Firefighters in Fight Over Presumptive Benefits

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In The Service Of Others

Firefighters in Fight Over Presumptive Benefits

Featured on First Coast News

Submitted by Claire Simms, Reporter

Wednesday, January 18th, 2012, 10:32am

JACKSONVILLE BEACH, Fla. — Jacksonville Beach is the latest city in Florida to show their support for police and fire pension reform, specifically measures that would take away presumptive benefits for heart and lung issues.

The City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to pass a resolution saying they support pension reform.

The Florida League of Cities is pushing the change, asking cities across the state to pass similar resolutions, so that they can show state legislators they have widespread support.

The group would like to change the Heart and Lung Bill to require firefighters and police to have proof that their illnesses are job related.

President of the Jacksonville Association of Firefighters Randy Wyse said this is an issue that does not just impact Jacksonville Beach, but firefighters across the state.

“Obviously we have very dangerous jobs and for a league or a group to to say, ‘Well, no.  It’s not really what your job entails that causes these things.’ I think is really short-sighted,” shared Wyse.  “I can’t imagine that anybody would think that what we do doesn’t bring certain health risks.”

Jacksonville Beach City Manager George Forbes said he was not willing to do an interview about the resolution, because it is a state issue.

However, the city had the document posted on its website, saying:

“The City of Jacksonville Beach hereby requests the Florida Legislature to amend current statutory disability presumptions for firefighters, law enforcement officers and correctional officers relating to tuberculosis, heart disease or hypertension to require the employee to meet age and employment requirements, allow the presumption to be overcome by a preponderance of evidence and allow certain individual risk factors to be considered when applying the presumption.”

According to The Florida League of Cities, dozens of other towns have passed resolutions supporting their efforts.

  • Bartow, City of
  • Belle Isle, City of
  • Belleair, Town of
  • Belleair Bluffs, City of
  • Bristol, City of
  • Casselberry, City of
  • Coral Springs, City of
  • Davenport, City of
  • Deland, City of
  • Delray Beach, City of
  • Doral, City of
  • Fort Myers, City of
  • Fort Walton Beach, City of
  • Greenacres, City of
  • Hallandale Beach, City of
  • Hypoluxo, Town of
  • Inverness, City of
  • Kenneth City, Town of
  • Lauderhill, City of
  • Marathon, City of
  • Mexico Beach, City of
  • Miami Shores, Village of
  • Naples, City of
  • Niceville, City of
  • Ocala, City of
  • Ocoee, City of
  • Polk City, City of
  • Rockledge, City of
  • Sebring, City of
  • St. Pete Beach, City of
  • Tequesta, Village of
  • Umatilla, City of
  • Valparaiso, City of
  • Venice, City of
  • Welaka, Town of
  • West Melbourne, City of
  • Wilton Manors, City of
  • Winter Park, City of
  • Zolfo Springs, Town of

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