Gregoire OKs better benefits for survivors of slain officers - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Gregoire OKs better benefits for survivors of slain officers

LAKEWOOD, Wash. (AP) - With an emotional thank you for their sacrifice, Gov. Chris Gregoire  has approved new laws that boost state benefits for the survivors of slain police officers.

It's part of a package of new laws from the state Legislature, responding to the shooting deaths of a half-dozen police in Western Washington last year.

One major bill raises the lump-sum payout for survivors to $214,000, and makes it rise with inflation in the future. The bill also removes the requirement that an officer have 10 years of service before survivors can get an annuity benefit.

In addition, surviving spouses and children will be guaranteed a free college education in the state. Another bill increases the penalties for aiding a criminal suspect who is on the run.

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