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Bill to help sick nuclear site employees dies in Senate

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - A bill that would have helped the sick employees of a nuclear site in southeastern Washington has died in Legislature.

The Senate Labor, Commerce and Sports Committee chose not to vote on House Bill 1723 after its hearing last week, which automatically caused the bill to die. The bill would have granted a presumption of occupational illness for certain conditions including cancer for people who got sick while working at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.

The reservation was a site where the federal government produced plutonium for nuclear weapons for 45 years.

Committee Chair and Republican Senator Michael Baumgartner of Spokane says the bill covered an important issue, but it was one that required additional discussion and fact finding with the federal government and elected officials.

The bill had passed in the House with a 69-29 vote early March.

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Information from: KING-TV, http://www.king5.com/


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