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August 27, 2014

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Nevada AFL-CIO condemns provision of Obamacare

Updated Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013 | 3:57 p.m.

The Nevada State AFL-CIO passed a resolution slamming Obamacare today.

The union claims certain provisions of the law would destroy union health plans, making the usual staunch allies of President Barack Obama just the latest Las Vegas union to publicly condemn the health care law.

Unions had originally backed the law but have grown increasingly skeptical of what union leaders like D Taylor, head of UNITE Here and former head of Las Vegas’ Culinary Local 226, called the law’s “perverse incentives” that potentially could shutter union Taft-Hartley health plans and leave workers without good health insurance.

Union leaders are concerned with a provision of the law that call for the provision of health insurance for people who work more than 30-hours per week, meaning workers’ hours could be cut so that employers don’t have to provide health insurance.

“The unintended consequences of the ACA will lead to the destruction of the 40 hour work week, higher taxes and force union members onto more costly plans,” the resolution reads.

The Nevada State AFL-CIO passed its resolution just hours after U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., addressed the union at its annual convention at the Excalibur.

Reid made no mention of Obamacare during his brief speech and instead talked about federal transportation spending before introducing the chief of the federal Department of Labor, who also delivered remarks to the union.

Earlier this month, however, Reid said during an interview with KNPR 88.9 that Taylor was “exaggerating” the extent to which Obamacare could damage union health plans.

“I would recommend that D (Taylor) just calm down and stop frightening people,” he said during the Aug. 9 interview. “I am working with him and the administration to help solve some of the issues.”

Reid said in an Aug. 9 television interview with Vegas PBS that “the sky is not falling” and that that the Obama administration is “going to try to work them out.”

The AFL-CIO resolution directly addressed the state of talks between unions and the Obama administration and did not characterize them as helpful.

“The Administration has postured on proposals to address the problem, but no proposal to date will actually solve the problem,” the resolution read. “Our health plans only get worse.”

Danny Thompson, the head of the Nevada State AFL-CIO told the Sun in an interview this week that they were led to believe that Obamacare would not change their Taft-Hartley union health plans under Obamacare.

“We were told that if you liked the health insurance you had, then it would be left alone,” he said. “Well, it hasn’t been left alone.”

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