Congresswoman Ann Marie Buerkle has issued the following statement today in response to news reports about impending job cuts from Skaneateles-based company Welch Allyn. The company announced that they would be entering a restructuring period that would lead to job losses in the range of 10% of the company's work force. Welch Allyn employs 2,750 associates.
Welch Allyns was badly damaged by the new tax increases contained in the Affordable Care Act, specifically the 2.3% excise tax on medical devices contained within the Affordable Care Act.
"Welch Allyn is an excellent employer and a vital asset to our community. Today's announcement is a devastating blow to our economy in Upstate New York," said Buerkle. "Washington should be creating a reasonable business environment so that employers can operate and do business here without going overseas. Dan Maffei's vote to raise taxes on Welch Allyn and other local employers is nothing short of irresponsible."
In 2009, Dan Maffei said that a proposed 2.5 percent excise tax on medical devices in the health care bill "hurts my district, " which is home to several medical device makers
o According to a Nov. 7, 2009, Congressional Quarterly Today article, "A proposed tax on medical devices has emerged as an important bargaining chip for some lawmakers at a time when House Democratic leaders and President Obama are negotiating vote by vote to pass historic health care legislation.
"To help pay for the cost of expanding health care coverage to millions of uninsured Americans, the bill (HR 3962) would impose a 2.5 percent excise tax on the sale or lease of medical devices, such as prosthetic limbs and defibrillators. The provision would raise an estimated $20 billion over 10 years.
"Members with medical device manufacturers in their districts are pushing back, trying to win assurances from party leaders and Obama that the excise tax rate will be reduced in a House-Senate conference.
"Democrat Dan Maffei noted that his upstate New York district is home to several medical device makers, including Skaneateles Falls-based Welch Allyn Inc. He said the tax would unfairly hit companies that produce innovative technologies. "It hurts my district,' Maffei said."
Yet Dan Maffei said he has no regrets about supporting President Obama's landmark health care reform legislation
o In a Dec. 20, 2010, article, the Post-Standard reported, "He [Maffei] said he has no regrets about supporting President Obama's landmark health care reform legislation, in which he worked to protect Medicare payments to New York hospitals and lower what he viewed as a punitive tax on medical device manufacturers such as Welch Allyn in Skaneateles."