After officer’s death, Kentucky seeks to increase benefits

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) – Two days after an eastern Kentucky police officer was killed on the job, some state lawmakers have voted to greatly increase benefits for his widow.

A House committee unanimously approved House bill 185 on Thursday. Right now, if a public worker is killed on the job the spouse would get to choose between 25 percent of the worker’s salary or whatever retirement benefit the worker had earned.

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This proposal would increase that to 75 percent of a worker’s salary. It would apply to anyone receiving benefits after Jan. 1, 2017. The bill must still be approved by the House and Senate before it becomes law.

Pikeville Police Officer Scotty Hamilton was killed Tuesday night. Media reported he was a 12-year veteran of the department who was married with one child.