HARRISBURG – The Senate today unanimously approved legislation that would extend the Pennsylvania Heart and Lung Act to several law enforcement entities not currently included in the law, according to Senator Mike Regan (R-Cumberland/York), prime sponsor of the bill and Chairman of the Senate Law and Justice Committee.
The Pennsylvania Heart and Lung Act ensures that law enforcement officers who are injured on the job are paid their full salary and have their medical expenses paid while they recover.
“These men and women who protect their communities and our Commonwealth put their lives on the line everyday just as other law enforcement officers do for us,” said Regan. “Therefore, they are as deserving of disability benefits when injured on the job and are unable to work.”
The law enforcement officers added under Senate Bill 503 include:
- Department of Military & Veterans Affairs Fort Indiantown Gap Police
- Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Park Rangers, Ranger Supervisors, Ranger Operation Specialists, Ranger Trainees, and State Park Officers
- Department of Corrections’ Bureau of Investigations and Intelligence Commissioned Police Offices
- Office of Inspector General Investigative Staff
- Allegheny County Port Authority and Housing Authority Police
Additionally, the bill includes opt-in provisions for counties to provide benefits to corrections and probation officers and for state-owned, -related, and -aided universities, as well as community colleges, to provide coverage to their campus police. The same option would be provided to other housing and transit authorities for their respective police officers.
“As former law enforcement myself, it is my honor to be the one to lead this effort to expand the Heart and Lung Act as a way to thank and recognize the sacrifices of those who have committed themselves to a dangerous line of work to serve and protect, despite the possibility of serious injury,” stated Regan.
The measure now goes to the House of Representatives for consideration.
Senator Regan’s remarks on SB 503 from Senate Appropriations Committee. The Senator submitted remarks for the record on final passage.
CONTACT: Bruce McLanahan, 717-787-8524