Printing Industries of America Statement on Health Care Bill
PITTSBURGH, Pa.—Printing Industries of America (www.printing.org) urged the U.S. House of Representatives to reject the health care reform legislation that was passed on March 21.
In a letter to all U.S. Representatives, Printing Industries noted that America’s printing and graphic communications industry has a long and proud tradition of offering quality employee benefits to workers and their families. Today, more than 90 percent of graphic communications companies provide benefits to a workforce numbering 900,000. The letter noted, though, that access to affordable health insurance is a growing crisis plaguing Printing Industries of America’s member companies, and, in particular, the small printers that make up the vast majority of the industry.
In announcing the association’s opposition to this legislation, Vice President of Government Affairs Lisbeth A. Lyons said, “Printing Industries of America supports health care reform that would control costs, create more choices in the marketplace, and, ultimately, cover more workers and their dependents in the industry and throughout the country. Unfortunately, H.R. 3590 would not achieve these goals.”
In its letter, Printing Industries of America noted the following as “key concerns regarding H.R. 3590 and proposed modifications to it:”
• An employer mandate that does little to make insurance more affordable and assesses penalties that discourage hiring of new workers in an industry that has lost over 70,000 jobs since 2008.
• An unworkable small business tax credit that will largely fail to offset the cost of employer-provided health insurers for small printers due to its temporary nature and rigid payroll eligibility structure.
• Increased Medicare payroll tax that sets a precedent for using future payroll taxes to pay for non-Medicare programs and that will hike taxes on a segment of printing companies.
• New restrictions and penalties on health insurance tools like Flexible Savings and Health Savings Accounts, cost-containment options that currently provide insurance coverage to nearly a quarter of printing industry workers.
• New taxes and fees on health insurance plans and a range of other health care products and services that may be passed through to employers and individual consumers.