June 29, 2016
On June 15, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz, R-UT; Ranking Member Elijah E. Cummings, D-MD; and Reps. Mark Meadows, R-NC; Gerry Connolly, D-VA; and Stephen F. Lynch, D-MA, unveiled a bipartisan discussion draft of postal reform legislation.
Although it is a notable improvement over previous postal reform efforts, NARFE opposes the draft bill because it would force eligible postal retirees, their spouses and survivors to enroll in Medicare – or forfeit the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP) coverage that they earned as a benefit of years of employment. For those not already enrolled, this would require an additional $121.80 per month (or more) in Medicare premiums.
NARFE strongly objects to the removal of choice in the decision to enroll in Medicare and believes it changes the bargain for postal retirees during retirement. NARFE has proposed, as a compromise, allowing for postal retirees automatically enrolled in Medicare coverage to opt out during a special opt-out period.
The Committee accepted public comments on the draft legislation through June 29th.