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Substitute Senate Bill No. 677

PUBLIC ACT NO. 96-231

AN ACT CONCERNING HEART AND HYPERTENSION BENEFITS.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Section 7-433c of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof:

(a) [In recognition of the peculiar problems of uniformed members of paid fire departments and regular members of paid police departments, and in recognition of the unusual risks attendant upon these occupations, including an unusually high degree of susceptibility to heart disease and hypertension, and in recognition that the enactment of a statute which protects such fire department and police department members against economic loss resulting from disability or death caused by hypertension or heart disease would act as an inducement in attracting and securing persons for such employment, and in recognition, that the public interest and welfare will be promoted by providing such protection for such fire department and police department members, municipal employers shall provide compensation as follows:] Notwithstanding any provision of chapter 568 or any other general statute, charter, special act or ordinance to the contrary, in the event a uniformed member of a paid municipal fire department or a regular member of a paid municipal police department who successfully passed a physical examination on entry into such service, which examination failed to reveal any evidence of hypertension or heart disease, suffers either off duty or on duty any condition or impairment of health caused by hypertension or heart disease resulting in his death or his temporary or permanent, total or partial disability, he or his dependents, as the case may be, shall receive from his municipal employer compensation and medical care in the same amount and the same manner as that provided under chapter 568 if such death or disability was caused by a personal injury which arose out of and in the course of his employment and was suffered in the line of duty and within the scope of his employment, and from the municipal or state retirement system under which he is covered, he or his dependents, as the case may be, shall receive the same retirement or survivor benefits which would be paid under said system if such death or disability was caused by a personal injury which arose out of and in the course of his employment, and was suffered in the line of duty and within the scope of his employment. If successful passage of such a physical examination was, at the time of his employment, required as a condition for such employment, no proof or record of such examination shall be required as evidence in the maintenance of a claim under this section or under such municipal or state retirement systems. The benefits provided by this section shall be in lieu of any other benefits which such policeman or fireman or his dependents may be entitled to receive from his municipal employer under the provisions of chapter 568 or the municipal or state retirement system under which he is covered, except as provided by this section, as a result of any condition or impairment of health caused by hypertension or heart disease resulting in his death or his temporary or permanent, total or partial disability. As used in this section, the term "municipal employer" shall have the same meaning and shall be defined as said term is defined in section 7-467.

(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a) of this section, [any uniformed member of a paid municipal fire department or any regular member of a paid municipal police department who begins such employment on or after July 1, 1992, (1) shall not be eligible for benefits pursuant to this section until such member has completed two years of service from the date of employment and (2) shall not be eligible for benefits pursuant to this section after such member has completed two years of service if the municipal employer proves by a preponderance of evidence that the member's condition or impairment of health caused by hypertension or heart disease is not job-related] ONLY THOSE PERSONS EMPLOYED ON THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS ACT SHALL BE ELIGIBLE FOR ANY BENEFITS PROVIDED BY THIS SECTION.

Sec. 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 1996.

Approved June 7, 1996. Effective July 1, 1996.

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