News Digest 4-16-2021


Firemen welcome Arizona law ensuring cancer benefits

New legislation signed into law in Arizona this week ensures health benefits for firemen in the state by expanding workers’ compensation for diseases presumed to be a direct result of their job. This bill also protects women in the field by adding breast and ovarian cancers to the list of qualifying cancers. KTAR


Michigan to tighten state contracting policies to curb payroll fraud

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer is tightening state contracting policy to prevent businesses that commit payroll fraud from earning Michigan contracts by targeting misclassification, which occurs when a contractor classifies an employee as an independent contractor in order to avoid paying health benefits, workers’ compensation, payroll taxes or overtime. The new policy would require the state’s contracting agency to mandate bidders complete a vendor question worksheet. Detroit News


Whistleblower protections bill passes Oregon Senate in party-line vote

A bill that would extend protections for workplace whistleblowers in Oregon passed the state Senate in a party-line vote on Wednesday. Senate Bill 483 would make it easier for employees to claim retaliation if punished by their employers after making a complaint to state regulators. Supporters say that the burden of proving that any such punishment constitutes retaliation currently falls squarely on the employee. Oregon Senate Republicans claim the bill creates a presumption of guilt for employers accused of retaliation. KDRV


Florida: Sheriff’s department employee accused of lying to receive workers’ comp

A veteran Broward Sheriff’s Office communications employee was arrested Wednesday on charges of workers’ compensation fraud and official misconduct. Surveillance video and other evidence reportedly proved that she did not fall down while working last August, as she had claimed, and lied about the incident. Local 10