Photo: Stricken Sept. 11 first responders and volunteers touted the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act last year at a clinic in Forest Hills. File Photo.
Legislators in the Senate and House of Representatives on Wednesday introduced bills calling for the reauthorization of the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act.
The original law, passed in 2010, provided healthcare and compensation for first responders, workers and residents of the areas around the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attack sites.
Two main components of the act—the World Trade Center Health Program and the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund—are set to expire later this year and October 2016, respectively. Under the reauthorization, both components would be extended through 2041.
Additionally, according to U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), the new bill calls for New York City to continue a 10 percent matching cost share of the World Trade Center Health Program; promises consistent research on World Trade Center-related conditions; and extends and expands support for the World Trade Center Health Registry.
“Just as our first responders and survivors worked hard to pass the 9/11 health bill in 2010, tirelessly walking the halls of Congress week after week, month after month, and year after year, we will do everything in our power to get this new legislation passed,” Gillibrand said. “But it shouldn’t have to take another ‘Christmas Miracle’ for Congress to do the right thing. It should simply take listening to these heroes and reflecting on 9/11 and about who we are as a nation.”
Mayor Bill de Blasio added on Tuesday, “Our first responders were there for us on 9/11 – and every day after. We have a moral obligation to continue to stand with them and ensure that they receive the health care and support they need and deserve.”
By Michael V. Cusenza email@example.com