State House moves Brennan bills on workers’ compensation, ‘cop killer bullets’

HARRISBURG, May 10 – Two bills introduced by state Rep. Tim Brennan were moved recently by the state House of Representatives. One would fix a loophole in the state workers’ compensation law concerning permanent disfigurement (H.B. 930), and the other would restrict a specific type of ammunition known as “cop killer bullets” (H.B. 1117).

The House passed H.B. 930, prime co-sponsored with Rep. Jason Dawkins, D-Phila., in a bipartisan effort on May 2. The legislation would extend workers' compensation to cover any worker who is disfigured on the job, no matter where the injury occurs on their body. Under current law, only disfigurement to the head, neck and face are covered.

“It's our job as state legislators to stand up for the rights of Pennsylvania’s working people. In our commonwealth, an employee cannot sue their employer regarding a workplace injury – the workers’ compensation system is their only relief if something horrible happens to them on the job,” Brennan said.

“I’ve worked with boilermakers, pipefitters, firefighters, nurses, and people from so many more professions who were permanently disfigured in accidents at work. Under current law, a restaurant server permanently disfigured from hot grease spilled on his or her chest would only receive two or three weeks of temporary disability,” Brennan continued. “These working people have to go through their entire lives with those scars and injuries. This legislation would allow us to give them something closer to justice.”

House Bill 1117, introduced by Brennan this past Friday, would follow the lead of other states by prohibiting the possession, purchase and transfer of armor-piercing bullets. These bullets are specifically designed to be able to infiltrate body armor worn by law enforcement officers. The measure would provide exceptions for authorized individuals and groups, such as members of the Armed Forces. It’s currently under consideration by the state House Judiciary Committee.