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Civic Affairs  


A police recruit widow's claim, in perspective

by William Crum Published: November 11, 2013

The widow of police recruit Kelley Chase filed a claim with Oklahoma City after a life insurance company said it would pay only $81,000 on her policy.

Chase, an Air Force veteran, was 38 and had two young children when he died in October 2012 after a training accident.

Elke Meeus said she and her husband signed up for $122,000 in coverage but that the paperwork was mishandled. The city attorney’s office is investigating the claim. Here’s how her claim compares to some other city spending decisions:

* The city council last week denied about $6,500 worth of claims filed by seven people while approving about $1,650 in claims filed by four people.

* The Water Utilities Trust paid $109,163.88 this year to get out from under a lease with Dave Martin, who had a sports shooting range on public land in southeast Oklahoma City. Neighbors complained about noise.

* The city spent $269,733 this year to provide police services for the State Fair.

* The council decided this fall to spend $8 million from reserves, mostly for street projects but including $500,000 for the downtown railroad quiet zone.

* The city’s total budget, approved by the council last summer, exceeds $1 billion.

by William Crum
OU and Norman High School graduate, formerly worked as a reporter and editor for the Associated Press, the Star Tribune in Minneapolis, and the Norman Transcript. Married, two children, lives in Norman.
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