Committee Presses Administration For Answers, Documents Regarding Latest #Obamacare Delay

February 12, 2014

WASHINGTON, DC – House Energy and Commerce Committee leaders today sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Jack Lew requesting documents regarding the administration’s most recent delay of the employer mandate.

In the letter to Secretary Lew, the leaders write, “Since the passage of the law, the administration has delayed numerous deadlines and effective dates set forth in the statue. These delay announcements have only increased with the failed launch of the HealthCare.gov website. … Even the truth was up for delay: HealthCare.gov’s initial troubles were blamed on interest in the PPACA. Today we know volume was not the culprit: the site could not even handle a few hundred users at launch. It is time for Treasury to provide the legal and factual information underpinning its decisions to delay key provisions of the PPACA.”

Full committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) commented, “Families and businesses, employees and employers across the country deserve better than the unpredictable and unexplained delays that give a temporary reprieve to some but not others – they deserve certainty, and they deserve fairness for all. Our oversight is grounded on the pillars of transparency and accountability, and we expect the administration deliver the facts with the same priority it has put behind its many delays.”

Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Chairman Tim Murphy (R-PA) added, “Postponing a doctor’s appointment can’t cure an illness, but that’s how the administration continues to treat the problems with cost, coverage, and access in the president’s health care law. Rather than denying reality, the administration needs to come to the public and Congress with an honest, transparent, and workable plan to address the concerns of American families.”

The committee leaders are seeking documents related to:

  • The costs or burdens of the law’s requirements on employers with more than 50 employees, and on employers with more than 100 employees that Treasury relied upon when delaying employer mandate; 
  • The costs or penalties for individuals under the health law that have been prepared for or by Treasury;
  • The constitutional or statutory authority of Treasury to delay the employer mandate; and
  • All documents exchanged between or among Treasury, HHS, and the Executive Office of the President referring or relating to the latest delay of the employer mandate and, specifically, feedback or analysis provided by HHS or the EOP to Treasury. 

To read the letter, click here.

NOTE: The committee sent a letter on July 3, 2013, to the Treasury Department following the July 2, 2013, one-year delay of the employer mandate. Senior Advisor to the Secretary and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Retirement and Health Policy at Treasury, J. Mark Iwry, also testified at a hearing of the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee on July 18, 2013.

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