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Officer's widow receives pension

An Eyewitness News Exclusive
October 6, 2009 10:11:46 PM PDT
It's a big break for the widow of a Jersey City police officer fighting and waiting for months to get her husband's pension. "I had no idea that I should have had it. It's good to have now," Mary DiNardo said.

What she has now is the pension her husband earned as a police officer in Jersey City.

Marc Anthony DiNardo was killed in the line of duty last July.

While the city and community rallied to support his widow and the couples' three young children, some accused the state pension board of dragging it's feet.

That was then, but now after Eyewitness News first brought this story to your attention last week, the state pension board is announcing changes.

According to the board, widows of fallen members of the uniformed services will "....receive these payments in a more timely fashion".

A spokesman says the Police and Fire Pension Board will soon vote on streamlining their procedures.

They say the board's chairman has expressed support for processing payments as soon as possible in cases like these.

It took nearly two and a half months for the state to pay Mary DiNardo.

Whatever changes the pension board makes, Assemblywoman Joan Quigley said under no circumstances should it take more than a week.

Quigley plans on reinforcing the board's changes with legislation of her own. She says she'll introduce legislation that speeds up the pension process for the widows and family members of fallen heroes.

"I get other complaints about the pension board acting slowly, but it didn't reach the level of outrage I felt about this one," she said.

Mary DiNardo hopes the changes help other family members of fallen heroes.

"It's really good news that this is something for the future. That we'll be taken care of in a timely fashion and won't be forgotten about," she said.

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