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Bipartisan Group of Senators Calls for Hearing on RECA Amendments Act of 2010

Bill Would Expand Relief for Americans Sickened by Radiation Exposure

June 25, 2010

Washington, DC – A bipartisan group of senators, including Idaho Senators Jim Risch and Mike Crapo, today sent a letter to the Judiciary Committee requesting a hearing on the recently introduced Radiation Exposure Compensation Act (RECA) Amendments of 2010, which would provide expanded restitution for Americans sickened from working in uranium mines or living near atomic weapons tests.

The letter to Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Ranking Member Jeff Sessions (R-AL) was sent by Sens. Jim Risch (R-ID), Mike Crapo (R-ID), Tom Udall (D-NM), Jeff Bingaman (D-NM), Mark Udall (D-CO) and Michael Bennet (D-CO). The legislation, introduced by the senators in April, was referred to the Judiciary Committee for consideration.

“This bill … would address key deficiencies in RECA, and extend compensation to a number of currently unqualified but suffering uranium workers and downwinders,” the group wrote. “Considering the importance of this legislation for many of our constituents, we respectfully request that you move quickly to hold a hearing on this legislation.”

Among other things, the RECA Amendments of 2010 would build upon previous RECA legislation by further widening qualifications for compensation for radiation exposure; qualifying post 1971 uranium workers for compensation; equalizing compensation for all claimants to $150,000; expanding the downwind exposure area to include seven states; and funding an epidemiological study of the health impacts on families of uranium workers and residents of uranium development communities.


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