Thank You Steve / GOP TAX PLAN: Tax Cuts for the Rich, Service Cuts for Those in Need

Thank You Steve

Steve Mostyn who passed away this week was a generous and loving individual. He cared about what happened in Texas and America. His support in 2003 is unsurpassed, and why we were able to oust Speaker Tom Craddick. Steve will be missed, and Texas and America will miss his engagement. Thank you Steve.


GOP TAX PLAN:
Tax Cuts for the Rich,
Service Cuts for Those in Need

The U.S. House and Senate GOP tax plans are bad news for most people. Both GOP plans have huge tax cuts for the rich.Under both plans the top 6% (those making over $200K a year) would receive over 40% of the tax breaks.

The Senate GOP tax plan currently has in it a repeal of the individual mandate for healthcare. Repealing the individual mandate was part of the GOP’s failed attempts over the summer to destroy the Affordable Care Act (ACA).Repealing the individual mandate according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO)  would cause 13 million people to lose their insurance and increase ACA premiums by 10% by 2027.

The GOP Tax plans would also cause $25 billion cut in Medicare spending, and another $111 billion in reductions to other programs.These will have a huge impact on our senior citizens as this will force many of them to pay more out of pocket for their medical care. And, not that he hasn’t done it before but this would break President Trump’s repeated promise not to cut Medicare spending.

The GOP tax plan would also get rid of many important tax deduction for working  Americans. This includes a deduction that allows teachers to deductive up to $250 in personal expenses for school supplies (now only in the GOP House version).  Hard workers that are repaying their student loans would also see their up to $2,500 tax deduction eliminated. Those who work for and attend universities and receive a tuition reduction instead of salary for their work (often graduate assistants) would know have the amount of their tuition reduction, counted as income, and taxedThose deductions that are eliminated may seem small, but mean a lot those who get them.

The Senate GOP plan does include a new tax deduction for private aircraft owners. The GOP tax plans were written by the ultra-rich to benefit the ultra-rich – not the people in the middle and working classes.

Despite all the cuts to services, the GOP tax plans are not even fiscally conservative. It is estimated that both plans will add about an additional $1.4 trillion to the national deficit in 10 yearsWith $1.4 trillion less in revenue at the Federal level, the burden to provide services and basic infrastructure is going to be passed down to the States. And, as we have seen here in Texas down to the local governments when the State refuses to pay their fair share for necessities like education and roads.

The GOP tax plans will most likely get tweaks here and there over the next couple of weeks. I will keep you updated on any important changes. As of now the U.S. House passed their plan without a single Democratic vote, and the U.S. Senate is hearing their version in committee today. But, unless the U.S. GOP begins to work with Democrats in bipartisan way the GOP tax plan will continue to prioritizes the ultra-rich over the vast majority of Americans and our future.

 “Twofer” by Mike Luckovich, Atlanta Journal Constitution


Recent Awards

I am honored to have been recently recognized by the Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute, Texas Psychological Association (TPA), and the Texas Nurses Association for my work in the Texas Legislature during the 85th session.

Texas Psychological Association
Outstanding Legislative Contribution Award
Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute
Legislative Champion Award

Health Care Open Enrollment Continues
The 2018 Open Enrollment Period for the Affordable Care Act (ACA) runsthrough December 15, 2017. Plans sold during Open Enrollment start January 1, 2018.
Please sign up as early as possible as this six-week open enrollment period is shorter than in the past. Failure to enroll can result in paying a fine.
Due to Hurricane Harvey, residents of Houston will get an extra two weeks to enroll.
To enroll, visit healthcare.gov
or call 1-800-318-2596.

Our allies at Cover Texas Now have provided vital information for Texans applying for health care during this enrollment period. Please see below.

“The vast majority of Texans who sign up for a health plan through the Marketplace will receive financial assistance to help pay their monthly premium costs, and some will also get assistance to help with out-of-pocket costs like deductibles and office visit co-pays…Financial help to afford health insurance costs, including tax credits for premiums and cost-sharing reductions for out-of-pocket costs, is still in place.

Texans can get help from trained enrollment assisters in their community to choose the best plan for their health care needs and budget.

Local enrollment assistance programs are listed on  connector.getcoveredamerica.org and localhelp.healthcare.gov. Texans can also call 2-1-1 to get connected with local enrollment centers.”

I will continue to keep you updated on the Open Enrollment Period. If you have any questions, please call my office at 512-463-0524.


Disaster Assistance Deadline Next Week

Residents of Harris County who suffered damage and losses from Hurricane Harvey now have until Friday, Nov. 24, 2017, to register for disaster assistance.

Survivors may register for assistance the following ways:


Our song of the week is “They Don’t Care About Us.” by Michael Jackson.

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