Excerpts from Wayland.wickedlocal.com:

The Massachusetts Senate on Tuesday voted to set aside $420,000 to help municipalities buy equipment to remove deadly carcinogens from firefighters’ gear.

Under a budget amendment (1018) the money would seed a new trust fund to support the bulk purchase of extractors — large washing machines that can remove carcinogens that permeate clothing even after firefighters leave a scene. A $10,000 to $20,000 expense, extractors can be cost-prohibitive for municipalities, and nearly 30 percent of Massachusetts communities lack such equipment while others have outdated models.

In his maiden speech to his colleagues, the Foxborough Democrat invoked Saint Florian, the patron saint of firefighters, and the late Sen. Ken Donnelly, whom he called “one of our own patron saints.” Donnelly, a 37-year Lexington firefighter who also held posts with the Professional Fire Fighters of Massachusetts, died in April 2017 after battling a brain tumor.

The U.S. Senate last week passed a bill which would require the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to develop and maintain a registry to collect data regarding the incidence of cancer in firefighters. A 2015 National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health study found firefighters had a greater number of cancer diagnoses than the general population, according to Collins’ office. The bill had already passed the U.S. House, which now needs to approve a Senate amendment to it.