I have to admit that this one is personal. I had a hand in defending the Cessario v Meriden matter at my former firm, and never in my wildest dreams would I have envisioned the result the trial commissioner reached, let alone have it affirmed by the CRB. Officer Cessario retired from the Meriden PD in 1978 with a disability pension on account of his hypertension (high blood pressure). Remember well that hypertension in police officers and fire fighters was (and to a large degree still is) presumed to have been caused by the job, and thus compensable under Connecticut Workers Comp. Cut to 2001. 23 years later! (No longer) officer Cessario has a heart attack which he is, for reasons unfathomable to me, able to relate back to the late 70s high blood presure. The trial commissioner chose to ignore the opionion of Dr. Jim Dougherty, one of the finer cardiologists in the State, who adroitly points out numerous other occupational factors that brought abought the heart attck and tag the City with the costs for current benefits, increased PPD, and all manner of other expensive goodies that will be passed on to the Meriden tax payers. The CRB does not address the Citys defense that the claim for the 2001 heart attack was utimely. If you read the opinion, they just skate over that. I hope the City appeals. They should. This decision is a killer for Connecticut municipaligties.
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