Three bills to increase death benefits for the families of correctional officers killed in the line of duty were presented to the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee on Wednesday.
The committee gave unanimous approval to a bill sponsored by Sen. Donald F. Munson, R-Washington, to establish a special death benefit for members of the Correctional Officers' Retirement System who are killed in the line of duty. The surviving spouse or minor children would get a one-time repayment of the accumulated contributions and an annual payment equal to two-thirds of the officer's average final salary.
Munson said he modeled the bill after similar legislation sponsored in the House by Del. Norman Conway, D-Wicomico/Worcester.
The other two bills would increase the death benefit payment from the current $50,000 to $100,000 or $125,000, respectively.
One of the bills, filed by Sen. James DeGrange, D-Anne Arundel, applies to law enforcement officers, correctional officers, volunteer or career firefighters or rescue squad members and members of the state Fire Marshal's office. It raises the benefit to $125,000.