A backlog of workers' compensation claims by Minneapolis police officers appeared to have started flowing again.

A City Council committee on Monday overwhelmingly voted to settle claims totaling $1.3 million filed by 11 current or former police officers, including some who have faced allegations of misconduct.

Traditionally — and under Minnesota law — there's little, if any, connection between a government employee's medical claim to worker compensation funds and their conduct as an employee.

Last year, however, that was thrown into question in Minneapolis when a council committee denied a $145,000 post-traumatic stress disorder claim filed by former Sgt. Andrew Bittell, who was involved in the beating of Jaleel Stallings, an episode officers lied about until police video revealed the facts.

Several council members questioned whether claims by officers leaving the department — especially claims of PTSD by officers whose integrity had been questioned — should be borne by taxpayers. The change came as the number and cost of PTSD claims by officers leaving the department has risen, with claims typically costing between $100,000 and $200,000.

The moment caused consternation for city attorneys, who believed that the law didn't allow a denial on such grounds and feared the final result would be higher costs for taxpayers.

Earlier this month, city attorneys, including outside lawyers specializing in worker compensation claims, briefed council members on the law.

In a nutshell, they told council members: By the time we bring these cases to you, you've got little choice. Any questions of whether an officer might be faking a medical condition, PTSD or otherwise, has likely been settled by medical experts recognized by courts for diagnosing patients, they said.

Monday's vote during the Administration and Enterprise Oversight Committee — the first on any such claims since the attorneys' presentation — was 4-1 in favor of settling all 11 claims. Council Vice President Aisha Chughtai and council members Jeremiah Ellison, Katie Cashman and LaTrisha Vetaw voted in favor. Council Member Robin Wonsley, who chairs the committee, voted against.

Wonsley, the council's most vocal critic of police, said she still isn't satisfied with the state of affairs.

"There were a number of cases in this long list of cases," she said after the meeting, referring to instances in which she believed officers' prior conduct should potentially disqualify them from the workers' comp payout.

She didn't specify which cases she was referring to. But among the settlements was a payment of $112,500 to Tyler Klund, who was accused in a 2021 lawsuit of stomping on an armed man's head, making it impossible for the man to comply with officers' orders to give up the gun. He was initially cleared of wrongdoing by his father, Sgt. Darcy Klund.

The specific nature workers' comp claims is difficult to track; the medical basis is private data under state law, although sometimes the information comes out. Monday's tranche of claims included a number from officers represented by a firm that has historically represented clients making PTSD claims, Wonsley noted.

Between June 1, 2020, and October of last year — when the council rejected Bittell's claim — the city shelled out more than $24 million in worker's compensation settlements to roughly 150 Minneapolis police officers, according to a Star Tribune review of City Council minutes.