President Obama’s 2017 Budget Doesn’t Go Far Enough

For Immediate Release

Washington, DC – For The ERISA Industry Committee (ERIC), our members, and all large employers there has been no single more important benefits issue stemming from the Affordable Care Act (ACA) than repeal of the 40 percent excise tax on health plans. ERIC is the only national trade association advocating solely for the employee benefit and compensation interests of the country’s largest employers, who sponsor some of the largest private group health plans in the country.

“ERIC has tirelessly worked to educate lawmakers and the Administration on how employers have no control over fundamental aspects of health care costs, like geographic disparities – a key element for triggering the 40 percent excise tax,” said Annette Guarisco Fildes, president and CEO, ERIC. “The proposed adjustment for those who live in areas where the cost of health care is high is a long overdue recognition of one of the many problems with the 40 percent excise tax.  ERIC still strongly believes the excise tax does nothing to reduce the cost of health care or improve its quality, and we will continue to fight for its full repeal.”

Recent reports from economists on the amount of money that the 40 percent excise tax would raise are grossly overestimated and not grounded in reality. ERIC reiterates that there is no basis for the belief that any amounts saved by changes to employer health care plans will show up in the wages of employees.

ERIC urges the president and Congress to promote efficient health care delivery and encourage cost consciousness among private payers, as well as endorse Health Savings Accounts (HSAs).  HSAs represent a singular tool to achieve these efficiency objectives and must be supported.

In addition to health care, ERIC calls on the president to encourage Congress not to increase Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) premiums and stop using the revenue for unrelated federal spending.

“Increasing PBGC premiums only serves to hurt those participating in single-employer defined benefit plans. It takes money away from employers who would otherwise use it to fund additional benefits, create new jobs, and grow the economy,” said Guarisco Fildes.

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All media inquiries to The ERISA Industry Committee should be directed to:

Kelly Broadway, 202.627.1918, kbroadway@eric.org

About the ERISA Industry Committee
ERIC helps America’s largest employers stay ahead of employee benefit policy. ERIC member companies are leaders in every sector of the economy, and we represent them in their capacity as sponsors of employee benefit plans for their own workforce. Only ERIC provides the combination of intel, expertise, collaboration, and lobbying that exclusively serves the interests of large employers who provide health, retirement, and compensation benefits to their nationwide workforce.