Tax Alert — Tax on health care and hospitals

By Taxpayer Association of Oregon

Oregon’s Legislature now appears ready to consider adding to the costs of already-expensive health insurance. Your elected State Lawmaker is being pressured to vote on two BRAND NEW TAXES on healthcare plans and hospitals. House Bill 2391 will punish small business owners who can’t afford to be self-insured and will hurt individual Oregonians who buy their health insurance on the open market. These would all be passed along to those who actually pay the bills to help fund the state’s Medicaid program some of whom are already struggling to pay for their own health insurance.

The expected tax structure of HB 2391 is projected to rely on several taxes:

* 1.5% tax on insurance premiums passed to somewhere between 250K-300K payers – individual and small biz. Generates $145 million in new taxes.
* .7% tax on hospitals – passed to all people who use the hospital and co-pays. Costs of services will rise, and the share of deductibles and co-pays will increase for the end user. $120 in new taxes.
* 1.5% tax on CCOs – tax dollars taxing tax dollars.
* 1.5% tax on PEBB – a fake “buy-in” from public employee plans that will be a cost shift somewhere from the general fund – $10 million that many believe will steer away from education to Medicaid.

Remember, these taxes are being raised even though Oregon state government will grow by a billion dollars in new revenue.

These taxes are being raised even though Oregon is in the top 10 state and local government spending states per capita in the United States.

The details of this tax are hard to determine because this giant tax bill is being discussed behind closed doors during the final weeks of the 2017 Legislative Session. During the final weeks of the 2017 Session is when bills speed through the process with little or no public hearings.

Call your lawmaker to oppose HB 2391 the tax on health care plans and hospitals

  • Bob Clark

    Here’s how the tax on PEBB (state employee healthcare insurance) will work: Governor Brown in her next “negotiation” with SEIU and other state public employee unions will increase wages and salaries even more to completely offset this tax on PEBB. This same negotiation is good for virtually all state employees because non-union state employees are treated the same as being part of the union in negotiations. Now, for teachers the same negotiation outcome is likely with many of the school boards.
    So, the tax on public employee benefits is a mirage.
    The irony is pretty deep here as always. We’ve got to tax your health care so as to make it affordable. One needs to ask: affordable for whom, especially after the state government class takes a chunk out of the tax revenues for their own in one form or another? The Oregon Health Plan is badly bloated system with poor quality of service. And this is what we want to keep going. In Oregon government, less is more.

  • WorthKnowing

    Kate Brown’s & Lynn Saxton’s Oregon Health Authority report to the legislature lied about the Oregon Health Plan.
    Severely so.