Wednesday, March 08, 2017

Health insurance companies would get $1 billion or more windfall under GOP Obamacare replacement plan

Dan Mangan
Mar. 7, 2017

There's a sweet deal for insurers buried in the GOP's new Obamacare bill.

Health insurance companies could realize a $1 billion or more windfall over the next decade — and end up paying their CEOs even more money — because of a simple tweak in the GOP's proposal to replace Obamacare.

That tweak, buried in cryptic language on page 67 of the bill, would end the $500,000 cap that health insurers currently have under the Affordable Care Act on deducting the cost of executives' compensation as business expenses on their taxes.

The Republican proposal to eliminate that cap means that insurers would be able to deduct nearly the full value of their CEOs' compensation, and not pay taxes on it.

For a company such as Aetna, whose CEO Mark Bertolini earns more than $17 million annually, ending the cap would add to its bottom line, and encourage insurers to pay executives more money, critics say.


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