Groups formed across Kansas to assist firefighters injured in the line of duty will receive $5.1 million this year from a state fund.
Firefighter relief funds in Douglas County will see their coffers boosted by more than $140,000 this year.
Insurance Commissioner Kathleen Sebelius announced that more than $5.1 million will be distributed to firefighters' associations across the state, including those in Douglas County.
The annual payment comes from a 2 percent tax on fire and lightning insurance premiums.
It is the largest payment to the firefighters' associations made in the fund's 103 years of existence.
The money is to benefit any firefighter -- volunteers included -- hurt, disabled or killed in the line of duty, said John Washburn, of the Insurance Department's fire and casualty division. In 1997, 178 firefighters were injured in the line of duty in Kansas.
The Lawrence Firefighters Relief Assn. (FRA) will receive $108,955. Jim Sloan, secretary/treasurer of the association, said that it uses the money to pay for life insurance for its members.
``It's kind of a risky occupation, so it's good to have,'' he said. The members pay 15 percent of the premiums and receive on- and off-duty coverage.
Part of the $5.1 million given statewide will be spent on education -- $86,250 -- and accidental death benefit coverage for members -- $154,288. The rest will be split between 575 associations across the state.
Here is the distribution of funds in the area:
In Douglas County: Baldwin FRA, $4,204; Clinton Township FRA, $3,776; Eudora FRA, $3,527; Eudora Township FRA, $3,871; Kanwaka FRA, $2,355; Lecompton Township Fire District FRA, $3,311; Palmyra Township Fire District FRA, $5,393; Wakarusa Township FRA, $1,919; and Willow Springs Fire District FRA, $3,709.
In Franklin County: Centropolis Township FRA, $3,162; Cutler Township FRA, $4,293; Linc Ottawa Har Township FRA, $5,257; Ottawa FRA, $16,592; Pomona FRA, $2,417; Pomona Township FRA, $3,459; Richmond FRA, $1,918; Richmond Township FRA, $2,718; Wellsville FRA, $3,285; Williamsburg-Homewood Fire District FRA, $7,454.
In Jefferson County: Jefferson County Fire District No. 9 FRA, $1,462; Jefferson County Rural Fire District No. 6 FRA, $3,402; Jefferson County No. 5 FRA, $5,200; Jefferson County Fire District No. 11 FRA, $6,487; Jefferson County Fire District No. 12, $3,573; Jefferson Township No. 10 FRA, $2,841; Kaw Township Jefferson County FRA, $1,378; Kentucky Township Jefferson County FRA, $4,089; McLouth Volunteer Fire Department FRA, $2,959; Nortonville FRA, $2,065; Oskaloosa Township FRA, $3,807; Ozawkie Township FRA, $1,341; Perry FRA, $2,703; Rural Township Fire Department No. 3 FRA, $2,895; Sarcoxie Township FRA, $3,596; and Winchester FRA, $1,799.
In Leavenworth County: Tonganoxie FRA, $4,258; and Tonganoxie Township Leavenworth County FRA, $1,921.
-- Felicia Haynes' phone message number is 832-7173. Her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.