The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010 is set to expire in 2016. The act provides $4.3 billion provides for health care benefits and monitoring. The act was named after a NYC police detective who died as a result of toxins ingested at the Ground Zero site. Troy Rosasco discusses the bill and efforts in progress to get a new bill passed to continue the benefits. [Note: Since this interview was given, three firefighters died on the same day of 9/11-related ailments.]
Rosasco says that legislators would be introducing a new bill to extend the benefits to 2041. There are long latency periods for some of the cancers resulting from 9/11 exposure, such as lung cancer and mesothelioma. Because of this, it seems surprising that the initial act had a relatively short time limit. Rosasco explains that the bill was a compromise, that “it was better to get something than nothing.” The law was passed after a new Congress had been elected but had not been seated.
Rosasco also points out that there is more information available today than there was in 2010 as to how many and what kinds of cancers would develop as a result of exposure to the Ground Zero toxins by rescue and recovery workers. Causation is not a real issue, as research has shown strong connections between exposure and the specific types of cancers that have appeared.
As to how much should be appropriated, Rosasco says that some information from actuaries would be required. It’s clear that there will be more illnesses and deaths from 9/11, however. The sum needed will be in the billions of dollars.
Troy G. Rosasco, a partner in Turley, Hansen & Partners, LLP, is one of the leading disability lawyers in the New York metropolitan region. His practice has spanned all areas of disability benefits law, including New York Workers' Compensation claims, Social Security Disability claims, 9/11 Zadroga Act claims, Construction Site Accidents, Veterans disability claims, and ERISA and Individual Private Long Term disability claims and Civil Service Disability pensions. In addition to his duties at the law firm, Troy Rosasco is an Adjunct Professor of Law at St. John's University School of Law where he teaches a course on workers' compensation and Social Security disability law. The Legal Broadcast Network is a featured network of the Sequence Media Group.