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Arizona House OKs bill to protect cities from catastrophic death costs

PHOENIX -- The Arizona House unanimously approved a bill that would protect cities and towns from large insurance liabilities in the case of a disaster that results in the death or serious injury of a public safety employee.

House Speaker Andy Tobin said the bill would help cities such as Prescott after the deaths of 19 firefighters in the Yarnell Hill Fire. House Bill 2693 distributes the cost of death and serious injury benefits among all members of the Public Safety Personnel Retirement System instead of keeping it within the city or town for which those killed in the line of duty work.

Tobin said it would protect Prescott from the approximate $5 million cost in death benefits to the families of the Granite Mountain Hotshots.

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