Late Wednesday afternoon, the House of Representatives passed legislation benefiting consumer-directed health accounts, particularly health savings accounts. These were the bills that were favorably reported from the House Ways and Means Committee earlier this month and ECFC was on record supporting these bills. A number of Democrats joined with Republicans to pass these two bills which shows some bi-partisan support for consumer-directed health plans and undoubtedly the materials that ECFC and member companies that show that these plans are middle class benefits helped in getting Democrats to support the bills. The list of provisions in these two bills and the bill’s revenue impact prepared by the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation is linked below.
Senate action on these bills is needed next. ECFC will contact Senate leadership to urge that the Senate take up legislation regarding consumer-directed health plans. In addition, the Washington lobbying fly-in day in September will provide an additional means of ECFC contacting members of Congress to support these bills.
As mentioned in previous e-mails to the membership, the bills considered today did not address the excise tax on high cost health plans (referred to as the “Cadillac Tax”) – one of ECFC’s highest legislative objectives. We understand that there may be action on bills to delay the Cadillac Tax later in the year. We will continue to urge members to repeal the Cadillac Tax.