Gov. Jan Brewer signed into law HB 2204, legislation that extends health insurance to the widowed spouses and dependents of Arizona peace officers, correctional officers and firefighters killed in the line of duty. The measure includes an emergency clause, so it takes effect immediately.
During a signing ceremony at the State Capitol on Friday, Governor Brewer was joined by dozens of law enforcement members, correctional officers, firefighters and spouses of fallen officers, as well as supportive legislators.
“I’m proud to sign this bill on behalf of the men, women and children who’ve lost a loved one in the line of duty,” said Governor Brewer. “The family members of fallen officers and firefighters endure enough grief and hardship without having to worry about whether they can afford health care. I thank Representative Robson for sponsoring this important measure and the Arizona Legislature for overwhelmingly supporting its enactment.”
Sponsored by Representative Bob Robson (R-District 20), HB 2204 is an extension of “Harrolle’s Law” – legislation signed by Governor Brewer in 2010. Named in honor of Arizona DPS Officer Bruce Harrolle – who was killed during a search-and-rescue mission in 2008 – the law requires that agencies provide health benefits to surviving spouses and children for up to one year after the officer’s death. HB 2204 eliminates the one-year limit and extends coverage to the families of fallen firefighters and correctional officers.
“We ask our officers and firefighters to perform extraordinary acts in the name of public safety. The least we can do is take care of their families if a tragedy strikes,” said Representative Robson. “HB 2204 is simply the right thing to do, and I’m proud Governor Brewer and the Legislature have come together to get this done.”