November 30, 2017
Both the U.S. Senate and the House are considering tax bills that would increase the federal deficit dramatically, leading in the future to cuts in safety net programs that millions of older adults, people with disabilities, and their families rely on. For example, more than 57 million older adults and people with disabilities depend on Medicare, including 11 million low-income beneficiaries who have both Medicare and Medicaid. The Senate plan calls for the repeal of the Affordable Care Act requirement that everyone have health insurance, which will result in healthier people opting out, causing premiums to rise – if not become unaffordable – for older people and people with disabilities. The elimination of the medical expense tax deduction, currently in the House bill, would also disproportionately harm older adults, people with disabilities and their families. NYLAG urges Congressional leaders to adopt a bipartisan, transparent process for tax reform that takes these issues into consideration – and includes public hearings, open comments, multi-stakeholder meetings, and sufficient time for the Congressional Budget Office to analyze the bill and ensure that changes to our tax laws take into account the financial security of people already struggling with health and economic challenges.