2019 Legislature             CS for CS for SB 426, 1st Engrossed
    2         An act relating to firefighters; creating s. 112.1816,
    3         F.S.; providing definitions; granting certain benefits
    4         to a firefighter upon receiving a diagnosis of cancer
    5         if certain conditions are met; requiring an employer
    6         to make certain disability payments to a firefighter
    7         in the event of a total and permanent disability;
    8         providing for death benefits to a firefighter’s
    9         beneficiary if a firefighter dies as a result of
   10         cancer or cancer treatments; specifying that any costs
   11         associated with benefits granted by the act must be
   12         borne by the employer; specifying that an employer may
   13         not increase employee contributions to fund the
   14         benefits granted by this act; requiring the Division
   15         of State Fire Marshal to adopt certain rules; amending
   16         s. 121.735, F.S.; adjusting the allocation of funds to
   17         provide line-of-duty death benefits for members in the
   18         investment plan of the Florida Retirement System;
   19         directing the Division of Law Revision to adjust the
   20         employer contribution rates for the Special Risk Class
   21         and DROP in the Florida Retirement System; providing a
   22         declaration of important state interest; providing an
   23         effective date.
   25  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   27         Section 1. Section 112.1816, Florida Statutes, is created
   28  to read:
   29         112.1816 Firefighters; cancer diagnosis.—
   30         (1) As used in this section, the term:
   31         (a) “Cancer” includes:
   32         1. Bladder cancer.
   33         2. Brain cancer.
   34         3. Breast cancer.
   35         4. Cervical cancer.
   36         5. Colon cancer.
   37         6. Esophageal cancer.
   38         7. Invasive skin cancer.
   39         8. Kidney cancer.
   40         9. Large intestinal cancer.
   41         10. Lung cancer.
   42         11. Malignant melanoma.
   43         12. Mesothelioma.
   44         13. Multiple myeloma.
   45         14. Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
   46         15. Oral cavity and pharynx cancer.
   47         16. Ovarian cancer.
   48         17. Prostate cancer.
   49         18. Rectal cancer.
   50         19. Stomach cancer.
   51         20. Testicular cancer.
   52         21. Thyroid cancer.
   53         (b) “Employer” has the same meaning as in s. 112.191.
   54         (c) “Firefighter” means an individual employed as a full
   55  time firefighter within the fire department or public safety
   56  department of an employer whose primary responsibilities are the
   57  prevention and extinguishing of fires; the protection of life
   58  and property; and the enforcement of municipal, county, and
   59  state fire prevention codes and laws pertaining to the
   60  prevention and control of fires.
   61         (2) Upon a diagnosis of cancer, a firefighter is entitled
   62  to the following benefits, as an alternative to pursuing
   63  workers’ compensation benefits under chapter 440, if the
   64  firefighter has been employed by his or her employer for at
   65  least 5 continuous years, has not used tobacco products for at
   66  least the preceding 5 years, and has not been employed in any
   67  other position in the preceding 5 years which is proven to
   68  create a higher risk for any cancer:
   69         (a) Cancer treatment covered within an employer-sponsored
   70  health plan or through a group health insurance trust fund. The
   71  employer must timely reimburse the firefighter for any out-of
   72  pocket deductible, copayment, or coinsurance costs incurred due
   73  to the treatment of cancer.
   74         (b) A one-time cash payout of $25,000, upon the
   75  firefighter’s initial diagnosis of cancer.
   77  If the firefighter elects to continue coverage in the employer
   78  sponsored health plan or group health insurance trust fund after
   79  he or she terminates employment, the benefits specified in
   80  paragraphs (a) and (b) must be made available by the former
   81  employer of a firefighter for 10 years following the date on
   82  which the firefighter terminates employment so long as the
   83  firefighter otherwise met the criteria specified in this
   84  subsection when he or she terminated employment and was not
   85  subsequently employed as a firefighter following that date. For
   86  purposes of determining leave time and employee retention
   87  policies, the employer must consider a firefighter’s cancer
   88  diagnosis as an injury or illness incurred in the line of duty.
   89         (3)(a) If the firefighter participates in an employer
   90  sponsored retirement plan, the retirement plan must consider the
   91  firefighter totally and permanently disabled in the line of duty
   92  if he or she meets the retirement plan’s definition of totally
   93  and permanently disabled due to the diagnosis of cancer or
   94  circumstances that arise out of the treatment of cancer.
   95         (b) If the firefighter does not participate in an employer
   96  sponsored retirement plan, the employer must provide a
   97  disability retirement plan that provides the firefighter with at
   98  least 42 percent of his or her annual salary, at no cost to the
   99  firefighter, until the firefighter’s death, as coverage for
  100  total and permanent disabilities attributable to the diagnosis
  101  of cancer which arise out of the treatment of cancer.
  102         (4)(a) If the firefighter participated in an employer
  103  sponsored retirement plan, the retirement plan must consider the
  104  firefighter to have died in the line of duty if he or she dies
  105  as a result of cancer or circumstances that arise out of the
  106  treatment of cancer.
  107         (b) If the firefighter did not participate in an employer
  108  sponsored retirement plan, the employer must provide a death
  109  benefit to the firefighter’s beneficiary, at no cost to the
  110  firefighter or his or her beneficiary, totaling at least 42
  111  percent of the firefighter’s most recent annual salary for at
  112  least 10 years following the firefighter’s death as a result of
  113  cancer or circumstances that arise out of the treatment of
  114  cancer.
  115         (c) Firefighters who die as a result of cancer or
  116  circumstances that arise out of the treatment of cancer are
  117  considered to have died in the manner as described in s.
  118  112.191(2)(a), and all of the benefits arising out of such death
  119  are available to the deceased firefighter’s beneficiary.
  120         (5)(a) The costs to provide the reimbursements and lump sum
  121  payments under subsection (2) and the costs to provide
  122  disability retirement benefits under paragraph (3)(b) and the
  123  line-of-duty death benefits under paragraph (4)(b) must be borne
  124  solely by the employer.
  125         (b) The employer or employers participating in a retirement
  126  plan or system are solely responsible for the payment of the
  127  contributions necessary to fund the increased actuarial costs
  128  associated with the implementation of the presumptions under
  129  paragraphs (3)(a) and (4)(a), respectively, that cancer has, or
  130  the circumstances that arise out of the treatment of cancer
  131  have, either rendered the firefighter totally and permanently
  132  disabled or resulted in the death of the firefighter in the line
  133  of duty.
  134         (c) An employer may not increase employee contributions
  135  required to participate in a retirement plan or system to fund
  136  the costs associated with enhanced benefits provided in
  137  subsections (3) and (4).
  138         (6) The Division of State Fire Marshal within the
  139  Department of Financial Services shall adopt rules to establish
  140  employer cancer prevention best practices as it relates to
  141  personal protective equipment, decontamination, fire suppression
  142  apparatus, and fire stations.
  143         Section 2. Subsection (3) of section 121.735, Florida
  144  Statutes, is amended to read:
  145         121.735 Allocations for member line-of-duty death benefits;
  146  percentage amounts.—
  147         (3) Effective July 1, 2017, Allocations from the Florida
  148  Retirement System Contributions Clearing Trust Fund to provide
  149  line-of-duty death benefits for members in the investment plan
  150  and to offset the costs of administering said coverage, are as
  151  follows:
  154  Membership Class                  Percentage of Gross Compensation 
  155  Regular Class                                  0.05%               
  156  Special Risk Class                          1.21% 1.15%            
  157  Special Risk Administrative Support Class              0.03%               
  158  Elected Officers’ Class— Legislators, Governor, Lt. Governor, Cabinet Officers, State Attorneys, Public Defenders              0.15%               
  159  Elected Officers’ Class— Justices, Judges              0.09%               
  160  Elected Officers’ Class— County Elected Officers              0.20%               
  161  Senior Management Service Class                0.05%               
  162         Section 3. (1) In order to fund the benefit changes
  163  provided by this act to the Florida Retirement System, the
  164  required employer contribution rates for the members of the
  165  Florida Retirement System are increased as follows:
  166         (a) By 0.08 percentage point for the rate established in s.
  167  121.71(4), Florida Statutes, for the Special Risk Class.
  168         (b) By 0.01 percentage point for the rate established in s.
  169  121.71(5), Florida Statutes, for the Special Risk Class.
  170         (c) By 0.02 percentage point for the rate established in s.
  171  121.71(5), Florida Statutes, for DROP.
  172         (2) The adjustments provided in subsection (1) are in
  173  addition to any other changes to such contribution rates which
  174  may be enacted into law to take effect on July 1, 2019. The
  175  Division of Law Revision is directed to adjust accordingly the
  176  contribution rates provided in s. 121.71, Florida Statutes.
  177         Section 4. The Legislature determines and declares that
  178  this act fulfills an important state interest.
  179         Section 5. This act shall take effect July 1, 2019.