Posted by: jgomori Posted date: January 13, 2023
It’s the final call to honor America’s Finest by nominating an officer(s) today for outstanding police work in 2022. For consideration, get your TOP COPS nominations to us by Monday, Jan. 16; The federal COVID presumption for eligibility for the Public Safety Officer’s Benefits (PSOB) Program for public safety officers who had COVID-19 at the time of death or who are disabled due to COVID-19 is still in effect. The presumption will last through Dec. 31, 2023, or until the end of the COVID-19 pandemic, whichever occurs later; The Fiscal Year 2023 Consolidated Appropriations Act that was passed by Congress at the end of last year included several NAPO priorities, from additional funding for the 9/11 World Trade Center Health Program to provisions protecting public safety retirement security. It also included a provision that ends the ability of health plans offered by nonfederal governmental entities, such as states and localities, to completely opt out of the federal mental health and addiction parity requirements. The parity requirements dictate that health plans cover mental health and substance use disorder treatments in a manner not less restrictive or more costly to enrollees than for physical health treatment; NAPO pledged our support for H.R. 27, the Prosecutors Need to Prosecute Act, which would require any district attorneys’ and prosecutors’ offices that receive federal funding through the Byrne Justice Assistance Grant (Byrne JAG) program to report annually the number of cases they decline to prosecute, the number of crimes committed by repeat offenders, and the number of criminals released. The collection of this data would make prosecutorial decision making more transparent and accountable, ensuring the safety of our communities and our officers; NAPO pledged our support once again for H.R. 304, the Stop Enabling Repeat Violence and Endangering (SERVE) Our Communities Act, which incentivizes states to allow judges to consider “dangerousness” when determining whether to release a repeat offender before trial; Congressmen Garret Graves (R-LA) wasted no time in reintroducing the Social Security Fairness Act (H.R. 82) and beginning the push to repeal the Government Pension Offset (GPO) and the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP). This legislation continues to be a top priority for NAPO; NAPO continues to support H.R. 233, the Qualified Immunity Act, reintroduced by Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN), which recognizes that Courts have repeatedly noted that the doctrine does not shield the inept or willfully blind but does protect law enforcement officers from attempts to impose “after-the-fact” liability for actions that no reasonable official could have known were unlawful at the time; NAPO priority legislation, the Thin Blue Line Act, was reintroduced as H.R. 130 by Congressman Vern Buchanan (R-FL). This important bill would increase penalties on those who harm or target for harm public safety officers by making the murder or attempted murder of a local police officer, firefighter, or first responder an aggravating factor in death penalty determinations in federal court; and It’s not too late to register for NAPO’s 34th Annual Police, Fire, EMS, & Municipal Employee Pension & Benefits Seminar, Jan. 29 – 31, 2023, at Caesars Palace Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.
For more details on these topics and other legislative matters, please click on the Jan. 13, 2023 Washington Report below.
Jan. 13, 2023 Washington Report