[UPDATE] Obama Signs 9/11 Health Bill

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

[UPDATE] 1-2 9:54 PM

President Barack Obama says he's honored to sign a bill to provide aid to survivors of the Sept. 11 attacks and first responders who became ill working at ground zero.

In a statement, the president says: "We will never forget the selfless courage demonstrated by the firefighters, police officers and first responders who risked their lives to save others."

The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act was named
after a police officer who died of a respiratory disease he contracted during the 9/11 rescue operations. The bill was one of the last measures Congress passed before adjourning in December.

The president signed the measure in private as his Hawaiian vacation nears its end.

Some Republicans tried to block the measure, saying they were concerned with how to pay for the bill. They dropped their opposition after lawmakers struck a compromise to reduce the costs.

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Honolulu, HI --

President Barack Obama has signed into law a bill to provide aid to survivors of the Sept. 11 attacks and first responders who became ill working in the ruins at the World Trade Center.

The bill was one of the last measures Congress passed before adjourning in December. Some Republicans were concerned with how to pay for the bill and they tried to block the measure. But they dropped their opposition after lawmakers struck a compromise to reduce the costs

The $4.2 billion measure will be paid for with a fee on some foreign companies that get U.S. government procurement contracts

Obama signed the bill from Hawaii, where he's vacationing with his family.


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