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Friday
Sep272013

Treasury report on Obamacare shows after losing $67 million, IRS wants $440 million more

Graph: U.S. TreasuryA report from the U.S. Treasury citing $67 million in unaccounted for indirect Obamacare (Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act) costs is not the only finding Americans should be concerned about. It’s necessary to read between the lines and the takeaway is that we have no idea of how “many resources” IRS has devoted to Obamacare implementation. Nor do we have a full estimate of the resources needed in the future although IRS has asked for $440 million more taxpayer dollars.

The IRS has already spent $488 million to implement the Obamacare bill through the Health Insurance Reform Implementation Fund (HIRIF). The Dept. of Health and Human Services administers that fund.

When Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) implied smoke and mirrors accounting applied to government estimates on costs for this bill, even he may not have realized just how costly the bill could become before it’s even fully implemented.

Here’s an example.

In the first part of the Treasury report, the IRS did “not expect any additional funding from the HIRIF after FY 2012.”

Further down, it’s obvious the troubled agency felt it needed more money:

The IRS also informed us that its FY 2013 spending plan includes $360 million to implement the ACA. 

That money, said Treasury, would be “funded from the IRS’ operating budget.”

So if you add the money already spent, $488 million, to the $360 million, the U.S. taxpayer has handed over $848 million to implement a controversial bill most polls show the majority of Americans do not approve of.

Spending close to a billion dollars is still not enough.

Treasury showed the IRS wants even more:

The IRS’s FY 2014 budget request includes additional funding of $440 million to fund 1,954 FTEs for continued efforts related to the implementation of the ACA. 

Part of that $440 million is for technology.

The 1,954 FTEs has to do with the hours labor puts in. Here is Treasury’s explanation of an FTE:

An FTE is a measure of labor hours in which one FTE is equal to eight hours multiplied by the number of compensable days in a particular fiscal year.

No indication of how many “compensable days” was included in the notation about the extra $440 million.

Treasury disclosed that in the money already spent, costs related to direct labor “were sometimes inaccurate and not always substantiated by reliable supporting documentation.”

Treasury’s report also substantiates claims The US Report has made, drawing criticism from a number of “progressives” and even one think tank on social media:

This lack of complete information on ACA implementation costs limits the IRS’s ability to accurately report to stakeholders the total resources it applied to the ACA implementation and fully estimate the resources needed in the future for this effort.

President Barack Obama has taken to the stump to criticize media and fiscal conservatives as well as government reformers. He has not mentioned the $67 million in taxpayer dollars unaccounted for, the fact IRS will ask for close to half a billion more taxpayer dollars to implement the bill, and the fact IRS really doesn’t know what the full cost of implementation will be.

If anyone is being held hostage here, it is the U.S. taxpayer. Obamacare is the ticking bomb, and the Democrats’ national party organization, painting the bill’s opponents as terrorists, has certainly erred in fingering the party responsible for future catastrophe. Obamacare is a Democrat product, just as housing and green energy debacles are.

Meanwhile, Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid says there’s nothing to talk about, and Obama isn’t budging. (Analysis by Kay B. Day/Sept. 27, 2013)

 Primary Source

Affordable Care Act:  Tracking of Health Insurance Reform Implementation Fund Costs Could Be Improved [9-18-13]; U.S. Treasury

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