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Upton Urges Permanent Reauthorization of 9/11 First Responders Health Bill

Dec 2, 2015
E&C Chairman Outlines Permanent Entitlement Reforms to Pay For Reauthorization that Puts 9/11 Heroes Ahead of Spending on Millionaires

WASHINGTON, DC – House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) today called for permanent reauthorization of the World Trade Center Health Program. Upton also outlined six permanent entitlement reforms totaling more than $4 billion to pay for permanent extension of the important program.

“The first responders who selflessly answered the call on 9/11 and their loved ones have gone through enough and the last thing they need to worry about is Congress playing games with vital health benefits they have duly earned by their sacrifice,” said Chairman Upton. “Let’s end the uncertainty by permanently and responsibly extending this critical program. Our solution puts heroes ahead of spending on millionaires. The choice is that simple - it’s time for Congress to get the job done.”

Chairman Upton outlined six permanent entitlement reforms to pay for permanent reauthorization. Among them is a provision that would require millionaires to pay their full Medicare Part B and D premiums.

SOLUTION: Require millionaires to pay their fair share of Medicare Part B and D premiums
Since 2007, Medicare beneficiaries with higher incomes have paid higher Part B monthly premiums. These income-related monthly adjustment amounts affect fewer than 5 percent of people with Medicare. Congress increased cost-sharing for Medicare beneficiaries subject to income-related premiums in Medicare Parts B or D in the ACA, MACRA, and the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015. This policy would require individuals with an annual income at or above $1 million (or joint filers at or above $1.5 million) to pay the full share of their Medicare premium. To put it in perspective, this policy change would mean millionaire Medicare beneficiaries would only pay approximately $70 more each month.

SAVINGS: $1.9 billion

Click here to read additional solutions to pay for the reauthorization.

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