For Immediate Release
March 21, 2013

Hatch Health Care & Human Resources Amendments to Senate Democrats’ Budget for Fiscal Year (FY) 2014

MEMORANDUM

TO:       Reporters and Editors
FROM:  Antonia Ferrier and Julia Lawless for Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Orrin  
           Hatch (R-Utah) 
RE:       Hatch Health Care & Human Resources Amendments to Senate Democrats’ Budget
            for Fiscal Year (FY) 2014  
DATE:   Thursday, March 21, 2013
____________________________________________________________________________

As the Senate begins to debate Democrats first budget blueprint in nearly four years, Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) today filed the following health care and human resources related amendments to S.Con.Res. 8, the Senate Budget Resolution for FY 2014:

HEALTH CARE AND HUMAN RESOURCES RELATED AMENDMENTS:

  • An amendment to repeal the 2.3 percent tax on medical devices (with Sen. Klobuchar): This bipartisan amendment would repeal the $30 billion tax on medical device companies in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) to  promote innovation, preserve high-paying  jobs, and encourage economic growth for manufacturers of lifesaving medical devices and cutting edge medical therapies. This amendment would not only help ensure that the United States remains the largest net exporter of medical devices, exporting $5.4 billion more than it imports, but will also prevent a loss of 43,000 high paying American jobs in this innovative sector.  


“Obamacare’s $30 billion tax hike on medical device manufacturers will do nothing to improve health care, but it will do plenty to undercut the viability of these companies that provide good wages and good jobs to American families. We’ve got strong bipartisan support for this amendment. It’s time to repeal this ill-conceived tax on innovation,” said Hatch who has sponsored legislation (S. 232) in the Senate to repeal the tax.

  • An amendment to repeal the employer mandate to offer health coverage (with Sen. Alexander): This amendment would repeal the $130 billion employer mandate in PPACA, which requires employers to offer government-defined health coverage.  Repealing this provision would allow businesses to invest, hire new workers and allow families to choose the coverage of their choice.  This mandate on employers with 50 or more employees to offer Washington-approved coverage or pay a penalty of $2,000 per full-time employee (FTE) is already leading to hiring freezes, reductions in work hours and dropping of health care benefits. In fact, surveys have estimated that at least 30 percent of employers will probably or definitely eliminate health coverage as a result of this ill-conceived mandate.

    “American job creators shouldn’t have to choose between paying taxes or paying their employees. Repealing the job-killing employer mandate will let businesses get back in the business of hiring,”
    said Hatch, who has sponsored legislation (S. 399) in the Senate to repeal the mandate.
  • This amendment would prohibit the Obama Administration’s unconstitutional attempt to gut welfare reform and to provide for a 5-year Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) reauthorization: This amendment establishes a deficit neutral reserve fund (DNRF) allowing for legislation that would not increase deficits but would prohibit the Administration for trying to gut welfare reform work requirements and replaces it with a 5-year TANF reauthorization that honors the dignity of real work, assists current TANF clients through a “work first” approach to becoming self-sufficient, continues to reduce the number of families that need welfare, improves State flexibility while increasing accountability and transparency in TANF spending, and ensures better coordination with other human services programs.

“Bypassing Congress and sidestepping the law in an attempt to unilaterally waive welfare work requirements, as the Obama Administration has done, undermines the successful bipartisan welfare reforms enacted in 1996. My amendment puts a stop to this unprecedented power play and tasks Congress to develop a robust reform of the TANF program,” said Hatch.

ADDITIONAL BACKGROUND:

  • Deficit Neutral Reserve Fund (DNRF): Permits the Budget Chairman to adjust the committee spending allocations to account for future legislation that may be considered in the Senate.  If legislation comes to the floor that satisfies the description in the DNRF (as determined by the Budget Chairman), the Budget Chairman may change spending allocations to prevent the legislation from triggering a budget point of order.

###