TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami) – After blocking a bill that would provide additional financial help to firefighters who contract cancer, House Speaker Jose Oliva now says he will allow the bill to be voted on.

Firefighters are at a far greater risk of contracting cancer and dying from the disease and many scientists believe it is related to the smoke and chemicals they breathe in while on the job.

A bill to provide firefighters who contract certain types of cancer a $25,000 payout to help defray some of their expenses.

Eighty two out of 120 members of the state house signed on as co-sponsors.

Nevertheless, Oliva blocked the bill.

Critics had argued Oliva opposed the bill as political payback to the firefighters union who had backed Democratic candidates.

In a statement this afternoon Oliva denied politics entered his thinking and he said he was now allowing the bill to move forward.


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