Sunday, January 26, 2020

Arizona First Responders Need Our Help Call on SB1160 by Jon Altman

ARIZONANS We need your calls for SB1160 to help first responders
Police and Fire Fighters have a lot in common with America’s veterans.  They all serve America and all go at risk. The three professions suffer from certain cancers at a much high rate than the normal population due on the job exposures while saving others.

Arizona Legislators and Governor Ducey stepped up more than a year ago and passed a presumptive cancer bill to cover Fire Fighters and Police Officers with worker compensation automatically for several of these cancers.  However, sadly, some cities and their city managers have found loopholes to deny coverage to these local heroes.
Our Legislature is again stepping up with Senate Bill 1160 (SB1160), sponsored by State Senator Heather Carter and the bill will be heard Monday, January 27th at the state senate.  However, the bill needs a second hearing by the Senate Appropriations Committee chaired by State Senator David Gowan – and Senator Gowan has until Wednesday’s senate deadline to set a hearing so the bill continues – he has not yet set hearing.
The American Legion, Arizona’s largest veterans service organization has more than 52,000 Arizona members supporting our Police and Fire Fighters and Legionnaires want to see SB1161 get a hearing.  Senator Gowan is well known for his support for veterans and our Arizona military bases, along with first responders.

Our fire fighters and police officers and their professional associations stood with Governor Ducey over the past two years in revising the public safety pension system to make adjustments to bring down some of the long term tax dollars going into the retirement system – which meant police and fire fighters making larger contributions.  The very conservative Reasoner Institute, along with voices in the Goldwater Institute, joined with Governor Ducey in thanking our first responders for taking on more of the financial burden and being responsible with our tax dollars.

Senator Gowan needs to hear from you so he knows he has the support to schedule SB1160 for hearing.  As Legionnaire and vice chairman of the Legion’s state legislative affairs committee, I know this is the right thing to do and Senator Gowan needs to hear from us.
Please call State Senator Gowan at 602-926-5154 or email him at
Ask Senator Gowan to give SB1160 and thank him for his genuine support for our military members and first responders. 
Jon Altmann
Senior Chief Petty Officer, US Navy (Ret.) 
Comments and opinions expressed by Jon C. Altmann are his own and do not necessarily reflect those of the Department of Defense, the U.S. Navy, or any of the organizations he volunteers his time in helping others.