Sunday, September 29, 2013

House approves continuing resolution to fund government, delay Obamacare, and repeal medical device tax

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (IN-02) voted to avert a government shutdown, while delaying Obamacare for one year and repealing the medical device tax.

“Once again, the House voted to reaffirm our commitment to the American people and keep the government funded, as we chip away at the harmful impacts of Obamacare. Hoosiers continue to send messages to my office explaining how Obamacare is driving up their insurance premiums, cutting employment hours, and burdening their families and businesses. This commonsense measure ensures the government provides essential services to our families, including senior citizens, veterans, and servicemembers. It also delays Obamacare for one year and repeals the medical device tax, an onerous tax that has already cost hundreds of good-paying Hoosier jobs,” said Walorski.

Since January, the medical device tax has claimed an estimated 10,000 jobs nationwide, prohibiting expansion and eliminating funds for research and development. Walorski is a co-sponsor of H.R. 523, a bill to repeal the medical device tax, and has supported legislation to delay Obamacare for one year. According to members of the Indiana medical device industry, repealing the medical device tax in the continuing resolution would be a victory for hundreds of medical device companies in Indiana, including Zimmer Holdings, Inc. and Biomet, Inc.

“Zimmer supports congressional efforts to repeal the medical device tax as part of must-pass legislation being considered on Capitol Hill,” said Chris Cerone, Vice President of Government Affairs at Zimmer Holdings, Inc. He continued, “This tax continues to hamper investments in research and manufacturing of new medical technologies. The tax ultimately threatens patient access to new advances in medical technology, including orthopedic technologies. “

Bill Kolter, Corporate Vice President Marketing and Public Affairs at Biomet, Inc. wrote in a statement, “Repealing the device tax will be a positive step in the right direction to strengthen the U.S. economy, U.S. high-technology manufacturing, innovative small businesses, new job creation, and the quality and cost-effectiveness of healthcare.”

Peggy Welch, the Executive Director of the Indiana Medical Device Manufacturers Council, also voiced support for the resolution, saying “The repeal of the medical device tax will allow newer and smaller companies to continue the production of innovative life-saving and life-enhancing products. The repeal will also help Indiana to retain and create quality, good-wage middle-class jobs.”

This resolution will now be referred to the Senate. Congress must pass a spending bill before September 30th to avoid a government shutdown.

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