Firefighters return cruise tickets from ‘Ellen’

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Ellen DeGeneres accepts the award for favorite daytime TV host at the 40th annual People's Choice Awards at the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

Ellen DeGeneres accepts the award for favorite daytime TV host at the 40th annual People’s Choice Awards at the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

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WELLESLEY, Mass. (AP) — Four Boston area firefighters that talk show host Ellen DeGeneres rewarded with Caribbean cruise tickets for rescuing a dog from an icy river have had to return them because of conflicts with state ethics laws.

Wellesley Fire Chief Richard DeLorie tells The Boston Globe (bo.st/1apPx73) Wednesday that he has sent the cruise vouchers back because state ethics law prohibits firefighters from accepting gifts worth $50 or more. He called DeGeneres’ gift a “nice gesture.”

DeGeneres gave the firefighters the tickets and life vests Tuesday on her show for saving a golden retriever named Crosby. The dog chased a squirrel onto thin ice Dec. 22 and plunged into the Charles River.

The fire department allowed the show to pay for plane tickets to the taping. The firefighters can keep the vests.

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