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Hearing of the Oversight Subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee - Internal Revenue Service's Implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act


Location: Unknown

I thank the Chairman for holding this hearing on the Affordable Care Act. We are always pleased to discuss our landmark health reform law, which will expand health coverage to over 30 million Americans.

Because of the Affordable Care Act, children today cannot be denied insurance benefits due to preexisting conditions, and young adults can stay on their parents insurance until age 26. Seniors already are saving hundreds of dollars on their prescription drugs and receiving free preventive services. This morning, the Department of Health and Human Services announced that the Affordable Care Act has saved people with private insurance over $2 billion.

We must ensure that the Internal Revenue Service continues to move with all deliberate speed to deliver hundreds of billions of dollars of Federal tax credits to American families and small businesses, which will make health insurance affordable.

I am confident that the tax provisions of the Affordable Care Act will be carried out on schedule. Today, I look forward to learning where we are in the process, the problems we have seen, and the issues that remain. I thank the witnesses for their recommendations to address these issues.

I also look forward to hearing from the agency about the resources it needs to fulfill its duties under the health reform law without harming tax administration. I continue to have serious concerns about the effect of recent budget cuts on taxpayers, tax collection, and agency operations. This year, the agency's budget was cut by over $300 million. This cut harmed taxpayers and tax administration.

For fiscal year 2013, the IRS requested a budget increase of $360 million for administration of the health reform law. Almost 75 percent of this money will be spent on technology needed to deliver hundreds of billions of dollars of premium tax credits.

I look forward to hearing more about the IRS budget request and how the amount requested will help the agency complete its work on the health care law while protecting Federal tax dollars.

Thank you.

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