I never really understood the term “I thought my head would explode” until I read the June 25 Albuquerque Journal Editorial on the Fair Workweek Act brought to us by City Councilors Benton and Pena. They decidedly meet the definition of socialists: “Spend, spend, spend until you run out of other people’s money.” Their ideas on this proposed ordinance would be ludicrous if they were not so chilling!
I did all the personnel scheduling at the Albuquerque JCPenny for about 20 full and part-time employees for eight years. The schedule had to be adjusted almost every week to accommodate medical emergencies, sickness and unforeseen events. Under this crazy ordinance, and when the employer has to schedule in replacement help, he would be penalized.
Our personnel scheduling used to be planned around when the public visited our establishment. Allowing the employees to schedule shifts instead of when we needed them would have put us out of business.
Because of the medical requirements of ObamaCare, many employers today have opted to reduce full time staff and keep as many employees as possible under 30 hours a week. This has required the employer to hire more part time folks. Many businesses would go out of business if they could not utilize this strategy. The Benton/Pena plan would require the employer to offer additional work to existing employees before hiring any new ones. This would negate the strategy mentioned herein and put more businesses at risk for going out of business. Now, the employer could agree to this horrible ordinance and simply raise the price of his products or services. But this could easily drive away his customers. I also find it interesting that labor unions are exempted from this plan.
There are so many things wrong with the Benton/Pena plan that it should never see the light of day. I agree with the Journal. The people who would be hurt most by this plan are the very workers it is designed to help. The whole council needs to tell Benton and Pena to get their noses out of other people’s businesses.
Shouldn’t this be a total no brainer for the Tea Party? They were the target of the crimes this guy enabled andcovered up. Granted it would not pass the Senate by 2/3rds, but it should pass the house and should help
dispell the growing perception of their impotence, incompetence, collusion with Obama and disregard of
the people who elected it. Clearly he deserves impeachment. Maybe you and disseminate this or get the
TP of NM to demand it.
Now PlayingShould IRS commissioner John Koskinen be impeached?
House Republicans are considering launching impeachment proceedings against IRS Commissioner John Koskinen or other agency officials in connection with the destruction of emails potentially tied to the scandal over Tea Party targeting.
National Review first reported that Republicans are looking at the possibility. A House oversight committee aide confirmed to FoxNews.com that the panel, led by Chairman Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, indeed is "looking into it."
"We haven't come to any conclusions," the source said.
Speaking with Fox News on Friday, oversight committee member Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, also appeared to acknowledge the discussions. Asked why lawmakers might consider impeachment articles, Jordan cited Koskinen's questionable committee testimony.
"Every time Mr. Koskinen comes and testifies, we subsequently learn that something he said wasn't quite accurate," Jordan told Fox News.
He did not elaborate on the impeachment option. But the development comes as Republicans, including Jordan, fume over the revelation that 422 backup tapes were destroyed shortly after officials discovered emails related to the Tea Party scandal had been lost.
J. Russell George, the Treasury inspector general for tax administration, revealed Thursday that up to 24,000 emails may never be recovered because the tapes were "magnetically erased" in March 2014. George said those tapes "likely contained" 2010 and 2011 emails to and from former IRS official Lois Lerner, a central figure in the controversy over conservative groups targeted for additional scrutiny as they sought nonprofit status.
George said his office found no direct evidence the tapes were destroyed to hide information from Congress or law enforcement. But the destruction nevertheless defied a preservation order -- and Republicans complained that despite the destruction, Koskinen testified to Congress three weeks later that they would provide documents to Congress.
"Three weeks before he said that ... they'd already destroyed 422 tapes," Jordan said Friday. "Those kind of actions are, I think, something that we have to look into very seriously, and that's what the committee's doing."
FoxNews.com has reached out to the IRS for comment.
Koskinen has served as commissioner since late 2013. He previously served in top positions at Freddie Mac and a range of private companies, and worked at one point in the White House Office of Management and Budget.
Pursuing impeachment proceedings would be a step beyond contempt charges, which is the tool House Republicans tried to use against both Lerner and former Attorney General Eric Holder in past disputes.
While impeachment is often thought of as a congressional weapon reserved for presidents, it can apply to "all civil officers of the United States," on the grounds of treason, bribery or other "high crimes and misdemeanors."
National Review reported that Republicans are considering whether to base a case on alleged misdemeanors.
One unnamed member of the House oversight panel told National Review that while some are "open to it," others may argue "that's not how we do things, it's not really been used lately.'"
There was one case, more than a century ago, when articles of impeachment were brought against War Secretary William Belknap -- in 1876.
He resigned amid the proceedings.
IRS Makes Mockery of the Rule of Law
According to testimony on 6/3/15 before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform investigating the IRS targeting of conservative groups, the Internal Revenue Service used “hundreds of attorneys” to hide critical information from Congress. This testimony, as reported by the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), came from Mary Howard, IRS director of privacy, governmental liaison and disclosure division. According to Ms. Howard, the IRS “amassed hundreds of attorneys to go through the documents [requested by Congress] and redact them.” Members of Congress have long complained the documents they requested were “redacted to the point of absurdity.”
Ms. Howard also works as the head Freedom of Information Act officer for the IRS. The Washington Times reported Ms. Howard said that once the “special project team” was created and operational, she never saw requests for information. “My understanding was that it started soon after the request came from Congress and other investigators asking for documents around this whole issue.” This would point to a timeframe around the spring of 2013.
When asked about Lois Lerner’s involvement in the IRS cover up, Howard testified, “I think that Lois Lerner was the tip of the iceberg.” You might recall that Carter Hull was Lerner’s immediate superior. In his testimony a few years ago, he said it was the Chief Counsel’s office that delayed a response on 501c3 and 501c4 applications from conservative groups. The Chief Counsel’s Office was a political appointee of the Obama administration named William Wilkins.
As reported in the interim House Oversight and Government Reform Committee report, “During his transcribed interview with Committee staff, Wilkins stated ‘I don’t recall’ 80 times in full or partial response to questions. His inability or unwillingness to recollect important aspects of the misconduct—after over five months to prepare and refresh his recollection—suggests a deliberate attempt to obfuscate his role.”
Why should all these “goings on” in Washington be of concern to New Mexicans? Clearly, there has been—and is currently going on—a massive abuse of power by our government: hundreds of attorneys hiding things from Congress; failed hard drives of several high IRS officials; IRS officials refusing to testify before Congress . The new head of the IRS said nine months ago that the abuse has stopped. That is not true. The Albuquerque Tea Party requested a 501c4 status from the IRS five years and six months ago. That application still hangs in limbo.
These abuses of power should send a shiver up the spine of every American: the full power of the United States government illegally targeted against Americans. How can we trust such a government? How can YOU trust such a government?
New Mexico is one of 28 states that expanded Medicaid coverage for impoverished adults as part of the implementation of Obamacare, resulting in more than 216,000 people joining the state’s Medicaid roster and pushing the total to nearly 800,000 enrollees.
Combined with a loss of federal funds used to pay for the expansion in 2016, the state will face a serious budget crunch, the Associated Press reports.
The federal government currently pays 100 percent of the cost of the expansion, but that percentage will decrease beginning in 2017 to 90 percent, resulting in New Mexico having to pay about $120 million of the expansion’s expenses. By 2020, more than 895,000 people could be on the rolls, including 257,000 who will be covered by the expansion. Based on current projections, total general fund dollars needed to cover the state’s Medicaid program by fiscal year 2020 will be $1.1 billion, including $268 million caused by the expansion.
David Abbey, director of the state’s Legislative Finance Committee, says other parts of the budget are going to have to shrink to accommodate the rapidly expanding Medicaid spending.
Behind the Eight Ball
Paul J. Gessing, president of the Rio Grande Foundation, a think tank based in Albuquerque, New Mexico, says New Mexico’s budget is always in doubt because it is highly reliant on oil and gas tax revenues and the state’s economy is not very diversified.
“It’s been described as a two-legged stool with one leg being the federal government and the other being oil and gas,” Gessing said.
“We have not recovered like many other states have from the 2008 economic recession,” Gessing said. “Another thing is New Mexico’s population declined during that period. Population loss is unheard of in a Western state.”
The state’s chronically bad economy makes it difficult to imagine how the state can find a way to pay for the huge expenses of the Medicaid expansion, Gessing says.
“Because of the politics in the state, Republican Gov. Susana Martinez faced a very difficult decision to expand the program,” Gessing said. “I’m sure she felt like she had no choice and she had to do it, but it’s a bit ironic a government program designed to alleviate poverty is going to spread it widely.”
Tax Burden Will Grow
Michael Cannon, director of health policy studies at the Cato Institute, says New Mexico’s officials should have listened to critics who warned the state’s motto, “It grows as it goes,” applies to the tax burden Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion is imposing on New Mexicans.
“That tax burden will grow further still, because both Congress and President Obama have proposed to renege on the federal government’s commitment to pay 90 percent of the cost,” Cannon said.
Meanwhile, the expansion creates a huge incentive for officials to protect able-bodied, childless adults at the expense of pregnant women and children, Cannon says.
Medicaid delivers only 40 cents of benefits to enrollees for every dollar spent, and it appears to have little if any impact on enrollees’ health, Cannon says. Under Medicaid expansion, the federal government pays 90 percent of the cost and the state pays 10 percent. New Mexico’s regular Medicaid match is about 70 percent, so the federal government pays two-thirds of the cost, and the state pays one-third.
With New Mexico facing a budget gap, its officials want to reduce its Medicaid outlays by one dollar. The state can then cut Medicaid services for pregnant women and children by three dollars, which saves the state one dollar while inflicting just three dollars of political pain. Or it can cut services to able-bodied, childless adults by 10 dollars, inflicting $10 of political pain, Cannon says.
“You can see the incentive this creates,” Cannon said. “States get much more bang for their buck by cutting services for pregnant women and children.
“New Mexico needs to opt out of the Medicaid expansion and enact real reforms that bring quality health care within the reach of more low-income residents,” Cannon said.
This article originally appeared in Health Care News.
As two New Mexicans who SUPPORT NEW MEXICO BUSINESSES AND JOBS, we ask that you support the settlement agreement for the San Juan Generating Station, as it has been submitted.
We lived in Farmington for two years. As a third-stage lung cancer survivor from Indiana, my wife and I found the air to be very clean and healthy. FARMINGTON, NM AIR IS THE SECOND CLEANEST IN THE NATION. How much cleaner does the government think the air should be? !
We 're simply asking for common sense.
Steve and Robyn Schmalz
Santa Fe, NM
TIME: Tuesday, May 19 , 2015 at 7:00 PM
PLACE: UNM Continuing Education Building
see Events Tab
The next ATP GENERAL MEETING will be at 7:00 - 8:30 PM on April 21 2015.
UNM Continuing Education Conference Center
1634 University Blvd. NE
Albuquerque. New Mexico 87131
NEXT TEA PARTY MEETING
7:00 PM MARCH 17, 2015 [Tuesday]
UNM Continuing Education Conference Center
1634 University Blvd. NE
Albuquerque. New Mexico 87131
See you there.
Save the Date
The Albuquerque Tea Party cordially invites you to the:
Saturday, September 19, 2015, 5:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m.
Marriott Hotel Uptown
2101 Louisiana Blvd. NE, Albuquerque, NM 87110
Speaker: Mark Meckler
See the Annual Dinner tab
On the 3rd Tuesday of each month the Albuquerque Tea Party meets with fellow conservatives at the UNM Continuing Education Conference Center from 7 to 8:30 PM. Come early and bring a friend or two!
The ATP Newswire is a collection of choice headlines that speak to Liberty and highlight big government malfeasance.