Last week the Senate and the House passed their supplemental budgets. Neither budget included funding for the restoration of the PEBB Medicare Benefit, cut due to the great recession from $183 to $150. Initially, both budgets included language to “explore the feasibility of transferring retirees from a Medicare supplement plan to a group Medicare Advantage PPO”.
RPEC members responded with calls in to their legislators stating that they would not support any study that would reduce their choice in health care and remove state oversight.
On Friday, Senator Karen Fraser sponsored an amendment to eliminate the study. It passed on a unanimous bipartisan vote. Our sincere thanks go to Senator Fraser for taking the lead on this effort with very short notice. Thanks also go to her co-sponsors, Sharon Nelson (D-34), Randi Becker (R-2) and Curtis King (R-14).
Now we need to put pressure on the House budget negotiators to remove the requirement for this study.
The budget bill in the House is SHB 2376.
Please call the Legislative Hotline at 1-800-562-6000 to leave a message asking your Representative in the House to remove the Medicare privatization language from section 213 in their supplemental budget, SHB 2376.
If you want to send your legislator an email, click here.