Firefighter relief organizations in Wyandotte County are receiving $487,518.18 in annual funds distribution, according to Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger.
The Kansas City, Kan., firefighter relief association will receive $449,994.78, according to the state insurance office. The Bonner Springs firefighter relief association will receive $26,237.80, and the Edwardsville firefighter relief association will receive $11,285.60.
More than $11.6 million is being distributed among 577 local firefighters relief organizations in Kansas, according to the insurance commission office.
“This fund assists firefighters and their families when an accident or death occurs in the line of duty,” Praeger said. “We in the Kansas Insurance Department are honored to assist in its distribution.”
The local association funds are used for purchasing accident and health, disability, and life insurance premiums to assist firefighters and their families.
The money is generated by a 2 percent tax paid by insurance companies on fire and lightning insurance premiums written in Kansas for the previous calendar year. It is collected by the department, on behalf of the Kansas Firefighter Relief Act, and passed on to the FRAs, as set in Kansas law.
Also, the Kansas State Firefighters Association will receive $467,780 for education and research purposes and to help fund the state association’s death benefit fund. These funds also come from the insurance company premium assessment.
Of the state association total, $367,780 is earmarked for educational purposes and research into fire prevention and firefighting, and $100,000 is used to replenish the death benefit fund.
A total of $1.353 million in benefits was paid in 2012 to firefighters as a result of firefighting-related injuries or disability, and nearly $622,281 went to dependents of firefighters.
Most of this year’s distribution was deposited electronically into relief association bank accounts.
“The electronic fund transfer is cost efficient and quick,” Praeger said. “The FRAs receiving the money can put it to good use immediately. Also, I really appreciate the leadership that John Boyd, our FRA administrator, has provided in this effort.”