Rep. Polletta Highlights Fallen Officer Fund in Two-Year State Budget

Posted on October 12, 2023


HARTFORD – State Rep. Joe Polletta (R-68) on Thursday highlighted a new, lesser-known provision in the two-year state budget that provides more financial support for the families of law enforcement officers who are killed in the line of duty.

The biennium budget signed by Gov. Lamont in June allocated $500,000 in each of fiscal years 2024 and 2025 to create the Fallen Officer Fund, an initiative proposed by House Republicans in the 2023 legislative session. The bill became an element of budget negotiations last spring after it garnered unanimous bipartisan support during the Appropriations Committee process.

“The men and women who serve our communities every day as law enforcement officers deserve the utmost respect and support from lawmakers – that is why they will know that Connecticut will support their family if something happens to them on the job,” Rep. Polletta, member of the Public Safety & Security Committee, said. “I am thankful that this initiative gained so much support during the 2023 session and that the administration took such decisive action to make it law. This will absolutely benefit law enforcement families in Connecticut when they need it most.”

Effective July 1, 2023, the fund covers any Connecticut state or municipal police officer as well as any auxiliary, intermittent, special, part-time, or reserve police officer. The family of an officer killed in the line of duty will receive a one-time lump sum benefit of $100,000, within available appropriations. The payment is not taxable under state law. It cannot be reduced or offset due to other benefits that may be awarded to families, such as financial assistance provided through the Police Association of Connecticut.

Heading into the 2023 legislative session, House Republicans, Polletta said, were moved to act in response to rising danger faced by police officers.

“Discussions with local and state law enforcement officers make it clear to me that they face serious obstacles in their profession – risks to their personal safety and restrictive state laws being primary concerns. We must be loud and clear that these officers have our support and that we are mindful as lawmakers to the challenges they face on the job,” he said. “The Fallen Officer Fund is an opportunity for us to do just that and I look forward to future ways to support Connecticut’s law enforcement.”