The president heard the concern about the future of the nonprofit plans, the senior administration official said. The Treasury Department spelled out the details of the administrations decision in a letter Friday to Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Rep. Dave Camp (R-Mich.). The Treasury Department issued a letter today making clear that it does not see a legal way for individuals in multi-employer group health plans to receive individual market tax credits as well as the favorable tax treatment associated with employer-provided health insurance at the same time, the White House official said in a statement. ( Also on POLITICO: 5 questions about the unions beef with Obamacare ) The president expressed in the meeting that he wakes up every day thinking about how to help working Americans and build the middle class he also expressed that the Affordable Care Act will work to create new affordable health care for millions of Americans this year, the official added. Labor officials worry that the lack of subsides for those multi-employer Taft-Hartley health care plans could encourage employers to move unionized employees onto the public exchanges created by the new law.
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Obamacare Update: Trader Joe’s Drops Health Insurance For Part-Timers
Anyone working less than 30 hours a week who receives Trader Joes health coverage will need to find a new plan from the so-called healthcare exchanges or marketplaces. According to a memo obtained by The Huffington Post , Trader Joes informed employees that Depending on income you may earn outside of Trader Joes, we believe that with the $500 from Trader Joes and the tax credits available under the [Affordable Care Act], many of you should be able to obtain health care coverage at very little if any net cost to you. Up until now, one of the perks of working at Trader Joes was a generous health insurance plan . Trader Joes has long offered health care, dental and vision plans to part-time workers at low cost which is rare in the grocery industry. During an August 2009 town hall meeting, President Obama promised that If you like your healthcare plan, you can keep your healthcare plan. Employers around the country are retrenching when it comes to health benefits as a result of the controversial federal law. For example, citing Obamacare, UPS, the countrys fourth-largest employer, last month decided to cut health insurance benefits for thousands of spouses of its white collar employees. Commenting on the Trader Joes move to drop part-timer health insurance, Investors Business Daily observes that The specialty grocers move adds further evidence that ObamaCare will cost far more than the $1.4 trillion currently forecast, as businesses and governments find ways to transfer their employee health costs onto the federal government, and as millions of other workers find they can get a better deal in the taxpayer-subsidized exchanges. Many state healthcare exchanges , however, dont yet exist or are behind schedule in ramping up, prompting one US Senator to describe the situation as a huge train wreck . At least 13 state attorneys general and other officials have warned about the possibility of fraud and identity theft associated with the healthcare exchanges.
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Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer keeps up pro-Obamacare fight
Jan Brewer, R-Ariz., has developed a reputation as an outspoken opponent of the president, but she’s going to the mat to defend part of his signature health care law. Brewer is one of the handful of Republican state leaders backing the optional expansion of Medicaid — the joint federal-state program currently open to disabled and certain low-income people. Because of the Affordable Care Act, states in 2014 can open up Medicaid coverage to anyone below 138 percent of the poverty line. Earlier this year, Brewer managed to win a fierce political fight with Republican lawmakers in her state to formally accept the Medicaid expansion in Arizona. Now, she’s facing a lawsuit from the conservative Goldwater Institute over her attempts to expand the government health care program. AFL-CIO: Obamacare implementation “highly disruptive” Representing most of the Arizona lawmakers who voted against the Medicaid expansion, the Goldwater Institute argues its implementation violates the state Constitution because it imposes a tax on hospitals yet failed to win the two-thirds support in the legislature that’s necessary to impose taxes. The Brewer administration argues that the two-thirds rule doesn’t apply in this case, the Arizona Republic reports. Brewer is one of seven Republican governors backing the expansion of Medicaid, in spite of the ongoing, highly-partisan debate over Obamacare.
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