Newton, Mass. (WWLP) – Governor Deval Patrick signed the “Line of Duty Act” on Thursday. This piece of legislation increases the death benefit of public safety employees who are killed in the line of duty. The benefit funds are now $150,000, which is a $50,000 increase from the original amount that had remained unchanged since the law had passed in 1994.
“I am honored to sign the Line of Duty Act to ensure that our first responders and public safety officials killed serving and protecting the citizens of the Commonwealth are appropriately cared for,” said Governor Patrick.
The bill passed through the House and Senate following the deaths of 3 public safety employees. Boston Fire Lieutenant Edward Walsh, Boston firefighter Michael Kennedy and Plymouth Police Officer Gregg Maloney all died in the line of duty.
“I am proud of the Legislature for providing much-needed support for the families of Lieutenant Walsh, Firefighter Kennedy and Officer Maloney,” said Senate President Therese Murray.
House speaker Robert DeLeo said, “As we pray for the courageous individuals who recently perished we must ensure the families of enforcement officials faced with the tragedy receive the support they so rightly deserve.”