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Gov. Pritzker signs bill extending benefits to first responders, essential workers

The governor’s office said the bill is effective immediately.
(KCRG)
Published: Feb. 26, 2021 at 4:33 PM CST
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - Gov. Pritzker signed HB 4276 into law on Friday. The legislation extends worker compensation benefits for first responders and frontline essential workers who were exposed to and contracted COVID-19 through their job until June 30.

The governor’s office said the bill is effective immediately and comes after building on efforts to protect Illinois’ first responders and frontline essential workers.

“This legislation ensures that our first responders and frontline essential workers, as well as their families, continue to receive the protection and benefits that they deserve,” Gov. Pritzker said. “Illinois has made substantial progress in our fight against COVID-19 and it is because of the hard work, and sometimes difficult sacrifices, from our first responders and frontline essential workers. I am proud to sign this legislation as my administration continues to do all it can to protect them, their families and all our communities.”

HB 4276 also allows extended time-off up to 60 days if COVID-19 impacted the recovery of an employee. For example, if COVID-19 impacted an individual’s ability to attend physical therapy at the doctor’s office which was closed because of COVID-19, under the new legislation, the time period is extended so the employee can now take time off to rehabilitate and receive compensation, according to Gov. Pritzker’s office.

The legislation also extends the timeline in which the death of a policeman and fireman from COVID-19 can be designated as a fatal injury while in active service.

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