WASHINGTON, Dec. 21, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Alliance to Fight the 40 | Don't Tax My Health Care today urged Congress to take immediate action to protect health care coverage for the more than 178 million Americans with employer-sponsored health insurance by repealing the Affordable Care Act's 40% "Cadillac Tax."
"The clock is running out for millions of Americans whose health care costs are rising because of the 'Cadillac Tax,'" said James A. Klein, President of the American Benefits Council. "Congress should act now to address this onerous tax that forces employers to reluctantly cut benefits and increase out-of-pocket costs in an attempt to avoid it. In addition, a provision in the tax reform bill accelerates the number of Americans to be subject to the tax."
The "Cadillac Tax" is a 40% tax on health benefits above set threshold amounts that are adjusted annually for inflation. The just-passed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will cause more Americans to be hit sooner by the "Cadillac Tax." It changes the way the threshold amounts will be calculated to now use the "chained Consumer Price Index," (chained CPI) which means the thresholds will be increased at a much slower rate. This will subject more Americans to the "Cadillac Tax" sooner because health care inflation will outpace any increase in the thresholds using the new "chained CPI."
"Employers create innovative and cutting edge benefit plans to help maintain a healthy workforce. Taxing these benefits could compel employers to stop offering wellness programs or on-site clinics and ultimately drive up costs for workers and employers, alike. Repealing this tax has strong bipartisan, bicameral support. Now is the time for Congress to protect health care coverage for working families."
Rep. Mike Kelly (R-PA) and Rep. Joe Courtney (D-CT) are leading the effort in the House to repeal the "Cadillac Tax" and have more than 220 cosponsors on H.R.173. In the Senate, the bipartisan effort is spearheaded by Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV) and Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-NM) with 20 Senate cosponsors on S. 58.
"Workers simply can't afford to pay more for their health care," said Rep. Mike Kelly. "We must repeal the 'Cadillac tax' before it taxes workers out of their health care coverage. I stand committed to working with my colleagues to send the "Cadillac Tax" where it belongs—to the junkyard."
"In Nevada, more than one million workers who have employer-sponsored health insurance plans will be hit by the Cadillac tax," said Sen. Dean Heller. "These are public employees in Carson City, service industry workers on the Strip in Las Vegas, small business owners and retirees across the state. That is why I have led the fight to fully repeal this onerous tax, and authored legislation that would do just that. I will continue to encourage my colleagues to act to prevent hardworking Nevadans and Americans around this country from bearing the burden of the Cadillac tax's devastating impact."
"Repealing this burdensome tax on employees will help ensure that health benefits are protected and that businesses and families get a fair deal," said Sen. Martin Heinrich. "There is bipartisan support for this effort and I hope that in the New Year we can work together to repeal this tax that would negatively impact millions of Americans across the United States who rely on employer-provided health plans."
More than 178 million Americans depend on employer-provided health insurance. The only way for employers to escape the looming "Cadillac Tax" is to reduce coverage and shift additional costs to workers. Neither employers nor their workers want that to happen. The clock is ticking and Congress must act now to address the Cadillac Tax.
The Alliance to Fight the 40 | Don't Tax My Health Care is a broad-based coalition comprised of businesses, patient advocates, employer organizations, unions, local governments, health care companies, consumer groups and other stakeholders that support employer-sponsored health coverage. This coverage is the backbone of our health care system and protects over 178 million Americans. The Alliance seeks to repeal the 40% "Cadillac Tax" on health benefits and work with Congress and the Administration to prevent increased income taxes on workers, families and retirees who rely on employer-sponsored health coverage. The Alliance is committed to ensuring that employer-sponsored coverage remains an effective and affordable option for working Americans and their families.
Contact: Tara Bradshaw
SOURCE Alliance to Fight the 40