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President Obama Signs Law On Donations To Slain NYPD Officers' Families

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) -- A new measure signed on Wednesday by President Barack Obama enables people to write off donations they made this year to the families of two slain New York Police Department officers.

Now-Detectives Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos were gunned down while sitting in their patrol car in Brooklyn on Dec. 20, 2014 by Ismaaiyl Brinsley. He then turned the gun on himself.

Typically, individuals would have had to donate to the families by Dec. 31 to quality for a deduction on their 2014 taxes. The new legislation extends that deadline to April 15 -- the same deadline for Americans to file their personal income taxes.

The bill passed easily in both the House and the Senate. President Obama signed the legislation into law Wednesday in private, according to the White House.

Following the deaths of the two officers, the Stephen Siller Tunnel To Towers Foundation collected more than $800,000 in donations from across the country and other parts of the world in an effort to pay off the families' home mortgages.

The organization met its goal in early January, and presented the Ramos and Liu families with checks during a ceremony.

The Tunnel to Towers Foundation was founded in memory of FDNY firefighter Stephen Siller. On 9/11, Siller abandoned his truck and ran through the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel with all his gear toward the World Trade Center. He was killed when the South Tower collapsed.

(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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