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News Article | May 9, 2017
Site: www.businesswire.com

DUBLIN--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Research and Markets has announced the addition of the "Americas Healthcare Market Report 2017" report to their offering. The market for healthcare in Latin America has been evolving. The rise in income in some parts of the region have also resulted in more demand for quality healthcare services. The governments and private sector players have also increased their spending in the healthcare sector. Healthcare spending in North America has been on the rise due to a range of initiatives taken by government in different parts of the region such as national level insurance coverage in the USA. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), commonly called the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed as a law by President Obama in 2010 to improve the quality and affordability of health insurance in the country. This law focused on reducing the costs of healthcare for individuals and the government. But, this law is expected to be repealed by the newly elected government in 2017. Major trend observed in the healthcare market was digitalization of medical records. Digitalization of information related to patients including their medical history, diagnoses, medications, treatment plans, immunization dates, allergies, radiology images, and laboratory and test results is being made possible with Electronic Health Records (EHRs). EHRs increase patient participation, and improve diagnostic and treatment outcomes. 13. Key Mergers and Acquisitions in The Healthcare Market For more information about this report visit http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/tfjvd9/americas


SOUTHLAKE, Texas, May 08, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:DFRG), (“Del Frisco’s”), the owner and operator of the Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House, Sullivan’s Steakhouse, and Del Frisco’s Grille restaurant concepts, today named Neil Thomson as its new Chief Financial Officer, effective May 22, 2017. With Mr. Thomson’s appointment, Del Frisco’s has formally accepted the resignation of Tom Pennison. Del Frisco’s is grateful to Mr. Pennison for his six years of dedicated service and for agreeing to assist during the transitional process. Neil Thomson has extensive restaurant leadership experience cultivated over the past 20 years. Most recently, he served as Chief Growth Officer of the Pizza Hut Asia Pacific region, a division of Yum! Brands, Inc., where he was responsible for finance, development, and supply chain functions for 4,500 plus restaurants and $3.5 billion in system wide sales in 2016 across 16 countries. Previous to that, he was Chief Development Officer for Pizza Hut International where he helped in developing the contemporary, fast-casual based asset model that later became one of the major growth engines for the Pizza Hut transformation strategy. Mr. Thomson also held several financial leadership roles within Yum! Restaurants International including Vice President of Finance, Chief Finance Officer for Indian Subcontinent, and Director of Financial Control & Field Finance for KFC UK. Prior to joining Yum!, Mr. Thomson held the role of Finance Director at an internet start-up company where he successfully raised two rounds of capital from private investors and established the company’s finance function. Norman Abdallah, Chief Executive Officer of Del Frisco’s, commented, “We are delighted to welcome Neil to the Del Frisco’s family as our new CFO. Throughout his extensive career, Neil has demonstrated his great talent in leading finance teams through a strong combination of strategic finance, development and corporate financial planning and analysis experience. We expect to benefit from his well-established credentials and executive leadership abilities. We would also like to thank Tom for his dedicated service to Del Frisco’s over the past six years, including successfully leading the Company through the IPO process. He has been a tireless advocate for our brands and we wish him well as he takes the next steps in his career.” Mr. Thomson received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Modern History from Oxford University, began his career pursuing a three-year audit rotation at KPMG, and earned his ACA qualification from the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales. About Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group, Inc. Based in Southlake, Texas, near Dallas, Del Frisco's Restaurant Group, Inc. is a collection of 53 restaurants across 23 states and Washington, D.C., including Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steak House, Sullivan's Steakhouse, and Del Frisco's Grille. Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steak House serves up flawless cuisine that's bold and delicious, an extensive award-winning wine list and a level of service that reminds guests that they're the boss. Sullivan's Steakhouse is a great neighborhood place for a big night out on the town - with outstanding food, hand-shaken martinis, an award winning wine list, and live entertainment all under one roof. Del Frisco's Grille is modern, inviting, stylish and fun, taking the classic bar and grill to new heights, and drawing inspiration from bold flavors and market-fresh ingredients. For further information about our restaurants, to make reservations, or to purchase gift cards, please visit: www.DelFriscos.com, www.SullivansSteakhouse.com, and www.DelFriscosGrille.com. For more information about Del Frisco's Restaurant Group, Inc., please visit www.DFRG.com.


SOUTHLAKE, Texas, May 08, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:DFRG), (“Del Frisco’s”), the owner and operator of the Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House, Sullivan’s Steakhouse, and Del Frisco’s Grille restaurant concepts, today named Neil Thomson as its new Chief Financial Officer, effective May 22, 2017. With Mr. Thomson’s appointment, Del Frisco’s has formally accepted the resignation of Tom Pennison. Del Frisco’s is grateful to Mr. Pennison for his six years of dedicated service and for agreeing to assist during the transitional process. Neil Thomson has extensive restaurant leadership experience cultivated over the past 20 years. Most recently, he served as Chief Growth Officer of the Pizza Hut Asia Pacific region, a division of Yum! Brands, Inc., where he was responsible for finance, development, and supply chain functions for 4,500 plus restaurants and $3.5 billion in system wide sales in 2016 across 16 countries. Previous to that, he was Chief Development Officer for Pizza Hut International where he helped in developing the contemporary, fast-casual based asset model that later became one of the major growth engines for the Pizza Hut transformation strategy. Mr. Thomson also held several financial leadership roles within Yum! Restaurants International including Vice President of Finance, Chief Finance Officer for Indian Subcontinent, and Director of Financial Control & Field Finance for KFC UK. Prior to joining Yum!, Mr. Thomson held the role of Finance Director at an internet start-up company where he successfully raised two rounds of capital from private investors and established the company’s finance function. Norman Abdallah, Chief Executive Officer of Del Frisco’s, commented, “We are delighted to welcome Neil to the Del Frisco’s family as our new CFO. Throughout his extensive career, Neil has demonstrated his great talent in leading finance teams through a strong combination of strategic finance, development and corporate financial planning and analysis experience. We expect to benefit from his well-established credentials and executive leadership abilities. We would also like to thank Tom for his dedicated service to Del Frisco’s over the past six years, including successfully leading the Company through the IPO process. He has been a tireless advocate for our brands and we wish him well as he takes the next steps in his career.” Mr. Thomson received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Modern History from Oxford University, began his career pursuing a three-year audit rotation at KPMG, and earned his ACA qualification from the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales. About Del Frisco’s Restaurant Group, Inc. Based in Southlake, Texas, near Dallas, Del Frisco's Restaurant Group, Inc. is a collection of 53 restaurants across 23 states and Washington, D.C., including Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steak House, Sullivan's Steakhouse, and Del Frisco's Grille. Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steak House serves up flawless cuisine that's bold and delicious, an extensive award-winning wine list and a level of service that reminds guests that they're the boss. Sullivan's Steakhouse is a great neighborhood place for a big night out on the town - with outstanding food, hand-shaken martinis, an award winning wine list, and live entertainment all under one roof. Del Frisco's Grille is modern, inviting, stylish and fun, taking the classic bar and grill to new heights, and drawing inspiration from bold flavors and market-fresh ingredients. For further information about our restaurants, to make reservations, or to purchase gift cards, please visit: www.DelFriscos.com, www.SullivansSteakhouse.com, and www.DelFriscosGrille.com. For more information about Del Frisco's Restaurant Group, Inc., please visit www.DFRG.com.


Nearly three out of four manufacturers now offer high-deductible health plans (HDHPs)—up from 50 percent in 2016—according to Benefitfocus behavioral research published in the recently released State of Employee Benefits Industry Edition. To offer additional financial protection from the higher deductibles, manufacturers increased their contributions to family-coverage health savings accounts (HSAs) by 22 percent. More than half offered at least one voluntary income ("gap") protection benefit across accident, critical illness or hospital indemnity insurance, and over 25 percent of manufacturers offered all three of these products. Auto parts manufacturer Yazaki North America, Inc. supplemented its health care plan with voluntary benefits and applied Benefitfocus technology to enhance collaboration and communication with its 1,850 employees. "With Benefitfocus we received more than an automated enrollment technology, we also have an extended HR team of benefits specialists through the Benefitfocus Benefits Service Center that adds capacity and centralized support for our workforce," said Senior Benefit Manager Dawn Jones. Hillyard, Inc. a leading manufacturer and distributor of cleaning and hygiene solutions moved from paper to electronic thanks to the BENEFITFOCUS® Marketplace, which not only streamlined its open enrollment and benefits management processes, but also automated ACA compliance, giving benefit administrators a boost in confidence. "The platform enhanced our member experience and simplified ACA reporting. The system makes it easier to comply," said Gregg Roberts, Vice President of Human Resources. "It just made sense to use the Benefitfocus Platform to simplify the entire benefits management process." Learn more about enrollment behavior by industry in the Benefitfocus State of Employee Benefits Industry Edition. About Benefitfocus Benefitfocus (NASDAQ: BNFT) provides a leading cloud-based benefits management platform that simplifies how organizations and individuals shop for, enroll in, manage and exchange benefits.  Every day leading employers, insurance companies and the consumers they serve rely on our platform to manage, scale and exchange benefits data seamlessly. In an increasingly complex benefits landscape, we bring order to chaos so our clients and their employees have access to better information, make better decisions and lead better lives. Learn more at www.benefitfocus.com, LinkedIn and Twitter. Except for historical information, all of the statements, expectations, and assumptions contained in this press release are forward-looking statements. Actual results might differ materially from those explicit or implicit in the forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially include: the need to innovate and provide useful products and services; changes in government regulations; the immature and volatile nature of the market for our products and services and other factors that could impact our anticipated growth; management of growth; fluctuations in our financial results; general economic risks; reliance on key personnel; our ability to compete effectively; our ability to maintain our culture and recruit and retain qualified personnel; privacy, security and other risks associated with our business; and the other risk factors set forth from time to time in our SEC filings, copies of which are available free of charge within the Investor Relations section of the Benefitfocus website at http://investor.benefitfocus.com/sec.cfm or upon request from our investor relations department. Benefitfocus assumes no obligation and does not intend to update these forward-looking statements, except as required by law. To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/benefitfocus-helps-manufacturers-build-a-productive-healthy-and-informed-workforce-300454031.html


News Article | May 11, 2017
Site: news.yahoo.com

Fresh off the House vote on repealing Obamacare care, U.S. Rep. Tom MacArthur, right, holds a town meeting in Willingboro, N.J., Wednesday, May 10, 2017. MacArthur, who played a key role in helping the GOP-led U.S. House pass an Affordable Care Act replacement bill faced angry voters at a town hall Wednesday, with charged questions about health care and President Donald Trump. (Tom Gralish/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP) WILLINGBORO, N.J. (AP) -- A Republican who headed the effort to revive the health care overhaul passed by the GOP-led U.S. House faced jeers and insults Wednesday as anger boiled over among voters at a town hall in a heavily Democratic part of his district. Rep. Tom MacArthur faced hundreds of angry voters for nearly five hours, seeking to both sell and defend the health plan that has drawn widespread outrage and fears among those worried they may be at risk of not being able to afford coverage. A group of protesters outside lay on the ground with tombstones during a die-in, while inside MacArthur answered heated questions about the health bill and President Donald Trump. Some voters chanted "goodbye" to MacArthur, who's being targeted by Democrats ahead of 2018 midterm elections. "I hear people calling their congressman an idiot," he said. "I wonder, really wonder, how any one of you would perform in Congress." MacArthur said he came to the Democratic part of the district for his first town hall since the health care bill passed because he wants to represent both sides and he's aware of the "anxiety" over health care. "Whether it's fun or not, I owe you that," he said. One member of the audience called out "Shame!" when MacArthur began discussing his daughter Gracie, who was born with special needs and died at age 11 in 1996. MacArthur, who has cited his daughter's death as a reason he got involved in the health care debate, responded, "Shame on you." Heckles erupted when the former insurance executive said he's "watching an insurance market that is collapsing," which was followed by a shout of "Because you drilled holes in it!" from a member of the crowd. MacArthur also faced angry questions about Trump, with one person asking him how long he was "going to defend this American nightmare." "I didn't come here to defend the president," said MacArthur, who added that he thinks the House and Senate should continue investigating Russian interference in last year's election. MacArthur joined Trump and other Republican congressmen in the Rose Garden at the White House last week after the health overhaul bill passed. He said then he was proud to "stand with a president" who was handling health care differently than Democratic President Barack Obama. MacArthur was one of only two Republicans among five from the state to back the House legislation, which would dismantle Obama's signature law, sometimes called "Obamacare." The Republican-led Senate is expected to write its own version. He helped the measure gain support from conservative colleagues by writing an amendment that would allow states to get federal waivers to the requirement that insurers charge healthy and sick customers the same premiums. The change would be for people who let their coverage lapse. MacArthur said those people would be covered by high-risk pools. The Congressional Budget Office estimated that under initial versions of the House bill 24 million fewer people would have health insurance by 2026. The bill that was narrowly passed by the House this month hadn't received a CBO score. Among other changes in the bill are elimination of tax penalties under Obama's law and erasure of tax increases on higher-earning people and the health industry. MacArthur, responding to a question from a constituent concerned about Medicaid rollbacks, said, "This isn't tax cuts for the rich. This is tax cuts for everybody." The bill includes nearly $1 trillion in tax cuts over the next decade, much of that for the very wealthy. Families making more than $1 million a year would receive tax cuts averaging $51,000, an analysis by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center shows. The bill would raise taxes for some low-income families. New Jersey was among dozens of states that opted to expand Medicaid under the ACA. Republican Gov. Chris Christie estimates 500,000 residents have gained coverage under the expansion, which he has touted as part of his efforts to fight the state's opioid addiction epidemic. Vicky VanWright, a 69-year-old retired second-grade teacher from Willingboro, said the debate over health care and concern over the repeal of the Affordable Care Act motivated her to come out Wednesday. "As far as health care, it should be for everyone," said VanWright, a Democrat. "I think it should be universal coverage."


News Article | May 10, 2017
Site: www.prnewswire.com

The ACA and AHCA: Repeal, Replace, and Impact on Employer-Based Health Plans Ron E. Peck Senior Vice President and General Counsel The Phia Group, Braintree, Mass. Healthcare reform continues to be a hot topic, though what that means varies from person to person. Regardless of your view on healthcare, it cannot be denied that the majority of Americans have, and continue to receive, healthcare through their employer. How the cost of healthcare, existing and new laws, and other innovative methodologies impact employer based health plans, and the evolving nature of these plans -- today and in the future -- are topics Peck is available to discuss: "In the United States of America, our lawmakers have and continue to focus entirely on 'who' pays for healthcare. Ensuring every American has health insurance has not, and will not, solve the problem. The issue is that healthcare costs too much in this country. The only solution will come from a combination of consumerism on the part of patients -- who must care about the cost of care they receive -- creative processes implemented by payers, and more efficient, cost-effective providers. The industry must solve the problem of cost, as lawmakers seem unable or unwilling to challenge those who game the system, and dip deeply into what is perceived to be the bottomless pocket that is insurance." ProfNet Profile: http://www.profnetconnect.com/ronpeck Website: www.phiagroup.com Contact: Matthew Painten, mpainten@phiagroup.com Immigration and the Trump Administration Juan Carlos Gómez Director of Clinical Programs; Director of the Carlos A. Costa Immigration and Human Rights Clinic Florida International University, Miami Gómez was recently quoted on NBC 6 in Florida regarding Trump's executive order on immigration (article: http://tinyurl.com/l4dwyrt): "I think the community, while worried, should not panic. They should go get the correct information, understanding that this is only the beginning of a new policy but due process still exists in the United States." Gómez has been defending the rights of individuals in immigration matters for the last 20 years. During this time, he has represented persons before the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, the United States Departments of Justice and Homeland Security in complex immigration matters. Within the field of immigration law, he has helped thousands of individuals in situations including removal and deportation proceedings, family immigration, and the transfer of professionals and executives to the United States. Gómez counsels international and national corporations on compliance with immigration laws. He also has coordinated teams of attorneys in multi-forum conflicts to effectively resolve clients' problems. As an attorney for a Central American Refugee Project, he coordinated the representation of thousands of individuals in the Southeastern United States in a national class action. He has represented refugees from every part of the world where there have been conflicts over the last two decades. As director of East Little Havana Legal Services, he led a team of attorneys to resolve the series of problems faced by clients in a holistic manner. Gómez is a highly sought-out attorney by other immigration attorneys for consultation on complex matters. In addition to having taught at a law school, he frequently lectures on immigration matters before professional organizations. He recently participated in a roundtable discussion on this topic: Part 1: http://tinyurl.com/mfeqezz, Part 2: http://tinyurl.com/lcfb53s, Part 3: http://tinyurl.com/mvv7tof Contact: Jessica Drouet, Jdrouet@fiu.edu GOP Reform/Repeal of Dodd-Frank Act Michael Imerman Assistant Professor of Finance Lehigh University Dr. Imerman is available to discuss proposals to reform or repeal the Dodd-Frank Act, passed in 2010 to provide financial regulation: "Both Dodd-Frank and the proposed replacement, the Financial CHOICE Act, seek to end Too-Big-To-Fail, reduce systemic risk, hold Wall Street accountable, improve transparency of complex markets, and protect the American taxpayer from government bailouts. I absolutely do not think that the Dodd-Frank Act needs to be repealed and replaced, and these attempts to do so are purely a matter of partisan politics. Is the Dodd-Frank Act perfect? Certainly not. But the answer would be to refine those areas that are not holding up so well, not eliminate the whole thing. Too-Big-To-Fail still is a real problem. In a soon-to-be-released paper, I show one of the most effective ways to combat TBTF is to require the largest banks to hold more capital. If banks find this to be too expensive, they can sell off assets and scale down their size; otherwise, they should be required to hold disproportionately more capital to reduce the risk of a taxpayer-sponsored bailout." Dr. Imerman's research focuses on credit risk modeling, banking and financial institutions, risk management, and derivatives. Bio: http://cbe.lehigh.edu/faculty/finance/michael-b-imerman Contact: Amy White, abw210@lehigh.edu Following are experts from the ProfNet network who are available for interviews regarding Trump's tax reform plan: Trump's Tax Plan Rebecca Kysar Professor of Law Brooklyn Law School Kysar is available for comment on Trump's tax plan. Here is an excerpt from a January op-ed she wrote for Slate: "It is not realistic to expect the tax code to be set in stone. But the pillars of tax reform should be stable enough to form the basis of long-term investment and growth. Radical, partisan tax reform will prove short-lived and ineffective. Reform that gives the lion's share of its benefits to the wealthy and adds trillions to the debt runs the risk of exacerbating inequality within and between generations, perhaps alienating Trump voters who elevated him to the White House based on his populist rhetoric." Kysar teaches and researches in the areas of federal income tax, international tax, and the federal budget and tax legislative processes. Her recent scholarship examines tax treaties, as well as the tax legislative process. Her articles have appeared in the Cornell Law Review, the Iowa Law Review, the Notre Dame Law Review, the University of Pennsylvania Law Review, the Washington University Law Review, and the Yale Journal of International Law, among others. Bio: https://www.brooklaw.edu/faculty/directory/facultymember/biography?id=rebecca.kysar Contact: John Mackin, john.mackin@brooklaw.edu President Trump's Tax Reform Proposal Robert Duquette Professor of Practice in Accounting Lehigh University Duquette is available to discuss President Trump's tax reform proposal, as well as the House proposal and the need for tax reform. He can comment on who benefits from these proposals, their projected impact on economic growth and national debt, whether they will pass, and why true tax reform is needed: "President Trump's plan consists of three individual tax brackets: 10 percent, 25 percent and 35 percent; and a doubling of the standard deduction. That would mean, for example, the first $24,000 of a couple's taxable income would be exempt from taxes. The House's version also provides for new, higher combined exemption deductions of $12,000 for singles ($18,000 with children), and $24,000 for couples filing jointly, and consists of three tax rates: 12 percent, 25 percent and 33 percent. Who benefits the most from these plans? The Tax Foundation projects that taxpayers would see an average increase in their after-tax income of between 1 percent and 10 percent in total over 10 years. However, the top 1 percent would benefit the most, with the wealthiest taxpayers seeing an increase in their after-tax income of 5 percent to 20 percent. What is the impact on economic growth and the national debt? A significant part of the cost would be offset by broadening the tax base through elimination of many deductions and credit, loss of business interest deductibility, loss of the domestic manufacturing deduction, and possibly a tax on some type of imports. All independent analyses of the proposals indicate there would probably be trillions of dollars added to the federal debt over the next 10 years. I'm not optimistic of passage of this tax reform in Congress. Even if it does pass, no reputable study has yet suggested it can help mitigate the growth in the national debt from the present $20 million to $30 trillion over the next 10 years." In addition to teaching taxation and accounting, Duquette is a CPA and has worked in tax and audit advising for three decades. Blog: http://cbe.lehigh.edu/blog Bio: http://cbe.lehigh.edu/faculty/accounting/robert-duquette Contact: Amy White, abw210@lehigh.edu Corporate, Trust and Estate Planning-Related Questions Michael Kosnitzky Partner Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP "The Trump tax proposal to reduce rates on business income from flow through entities like S corporations and domestic limited liability companies has the potential to cause tax inequities. However, the Treasury and the IRS have ample tools under existing law to police this unfairness. Taxpayers should look to IRS policy on 'reasonable compensation' and the existing tax regimes under the so-called passive activity rules and net investment income tax rules for guidance on how the government will deal with aggressive taxpayers in similar situations." Bio: https://www.pillsburylaw.com/en/lawyers/michael-kosnitzky.html Contact: Matt Hyams, Matt.hyams@pillsburylaw.com Tax Rates for Businesses Larry Elkin, CFP, CPA President Palisades Hudson Financial Group, Fort Lauderdale, Fla. "President Trump thinks income generated by privately held Palisades Hudson Financial Group should be taxed at the same rate as income generated by Alphabet Inc., Google's publicly traded parent company. And he thinks the rate for both businesses should be an attractively low 15 percent. You might expect me to be delighted by this news. I am a Republican, and we Republicans generally believe tax rates should be as low as possible. I also happen to be the owner of Palisades Hudson Financial Group. And I would be delighted with Trump's proposal, except for one thing: It's a phenomenally bad idea. Trump's proposal that all business income be taxed at the same (low) rate makes rhetorical sense, but not logical sense. To see why, consider the two companies I just mentioned. Alphabet is what tax nerds call a C corporation. It pays its own income taxes and then, when it distributes remaining income to shareholders in the form of dividends, that income is taxed again at the shareholders' rate. This means that by the time a single dollar of Alphabet's pretax income reaches a shareholder, federal taxes have reduced it to as little as 52 cents. But Palisades Hudson is not taxed that way. Like nearly all owner-operated businesses, it does not pay its own taxes as a separate entity. Instead, its net income is included on the owner's tax return and is only taxed once. This is what is meant by a 'pass-through' entity. Cutting my taxes on Palisades Hudson's net income to 15 percent would mean my income would be taxed at half the rate of the wages I pay many of my employees, or even less. And this would be the case for many firms nationwide under the proposed rules, including some much larger than mine." Website: www.palisadeshudson.com Contact: Henry Stimpson, henry@stimpsoncommunications.com 'Pass-Through Rate' and 'One-Time Repatriation Tax' Michael Faulkender Professor of Finance and Associate Dean of Master's Programs University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business On the pass-through rate: "President Trump's 'pass-through' proposal asks for abuse. Small-business owners could easily reclassify expenses to be net income and vice versa. If one mechanism has a lower tax rate than the other, the reclassifications will take place. Ideally, all income is subject to the same rate at the personal level, thus eliminating the incentive to reclassify the income." On the one-time repatriation tax: "A one-time tax on accumulated foreign earnings rewards corporations that have moved operations to foreign jurisdictions for gaming the tax system. Firms in position to move profits abroad (by transfer pricing of intellectual capital), and that anticipated being subject to the tax on the differential, would see that tax liability fall from as high as 35 percent to perhaps 5-8 percent." Faulkender's "Taxes and Leverage at Multinational Corporations" is published in the Journal of Financial Economics (summarized here: http://tinyurl.com/n3bgpkt). Bio: https://www.rhsmith.umd.edu/directory/michael-faulkender Contact: Greg Muraski, gmuraski@rhsmith.umd.edu Eliminating State-Local Deductions Albert "Pete" Kyle Professor of Finance University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business "Eliminating the tax deductibility of state income taxes, while preserving the tax deductibility of property taxes, would encourage states like California and New York to lower income taxes and increase property taxes. In particular, I would expect property tax caps in California to be phased out over time if these changes are made." Kyle has served as an economic advisor to NASDAQ, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. Bio: https://www.rhsmith.umd.edu/directory/albert-pete-kyle Contact: Greg Muraski, gmuraski@rhsmith.umd.edu Trump's Tax Reform Proposals and the GOP Blueprint Stephen M. Breitstone Partner and Vice Chairman Meltzer, Lippe, Goldstein & Breitstone, Mineola, N.Y. A tax attorney, Breitstone can readily discuss how Trump's tax reform proposals and the GOP blueprint could affect business in general, and especially the real estate industry, from commercial, office and rental owners and investors to individuals. Among other issues, Breitstone can discuss the implications of: standard and itemized deductions; repeal of the deductions for state and local taxes and the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT); tax on business; Immediate expensing of capital expenditures and elimination of interest deduction; estate and gift taxes. Says Breitstone: "It is likely that any tax reform would also include 'immediate expensing.' The GOP blueprint proposes 'immediate expensing' of capital expenditures, including machinery and buildings, but not land. This is coupled with the elimination of the deduction for interest (all interest, except interest on personal mortgages, which hardly anyone would claim due to the increased standard deduction). For businesses that make investments in buildings and machinery (and probably for the owners of pass-through entities as well), the tax rate of 15% is mostly for show. The actual tax rate, at least for the next few years, will be zero. Immediate expensing will wipe out all income tax liabilities, at least in the short run. This may result in an increased flow of liquidity to these businesses to invest and to grow. But this will be short-lived. After the deduction for immediate expensing is used up, there will be no depreciation deduction and no interest deduction on the debt incurred to fund these investments. That means the effective tax rate on these businesses will soar." Breitstone further questions immediate expensing as proposed, as it doesn't target growth in areas where we really need it, such as education, technology and infrastructure. If you throw money at dying industries, it may only accelerate the further layoff of employees by encouraging increased automation. Bio: http://www.meltzerlippe.com/attorneys/stephen-breitstone/ Website: http://www.meltzerlippe.com Contact: Peggy Kalia, pkalia@epoch5.com Impact of Trump's Plan Adnan Mahmud Founder LiveStories LiveStories is a civic data intelligence platform used by local, state, and federal governments to make massive data stores easier to understand for the general public. The company released a report called, "Five Facts: State Taxes and Spending" that includes findings on state and local expenditures based on the most recent U.S. Census. Mahmud is available to explain what this data can tell us about how Trump's tax reform plan will impact Americans. He can use these findings to illuminate opportunities and challenges that need to be considered in light of these policy changes. Contact: Rosie Gillam, rosie.gillam@walkersands.com How Reform Will Impact Citizens at Different Tax Levels Jinette Chiappetta, CPA Wealth Manager Equity Concepts Chiappetta can discuss how reform will impact citizens at different tax levels, as well as the overall economy. She is a wealth manager at Equity Concepts, a Richmond, Va.-based wealth management firm that serves more than 2,000 households and oversees approximately $875+ million in assets. Prior to joining Equity Concepts, Chiappetta spent 20 years in the tax field, with 15 years of public accounting experience and five years of corporate tax experiences. As a CPA, she places an emphasis on analyzing the impact of investment strategies on tax situations. Website: http://www.equity-concepts.com Contact: Kelly Holcombe, Kelly@flackable.com Impacts on Individuals and Business Owners Bill Smith Managing Director, National Tax Office CBIZ MHM Smith is available to address the impacts of the plan on both individuals and business owners, the feasibility of the plan, and how it may evolve over time. He has more than 30 years of experience in both the public and private sectors, including five years in the office of General Counsel at Deloitte & Touche LLP, where he was responsible for all aspects of the firm's tax practice; five years as a tax lawyer for the Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.; and 12 years in private practice in San Francisco, representing businesses of all sizes and high-wealth individuals in developing and implementing tax strategies or negotiating with the IRS in Tax Court or administratively. Smith assumed his current position more than 15 years ago and is based in Bethesda, Md. In this role, he consults nationally on a broad range of tax services, including foreign and domestic transactional tax planning for corporations, partnerships, LLCs and individuals, such as mergers and acquisitions, domestic and international restructuring of businesses and investments, and negotiating partnership and other transactions. He is a frequent speaker at national conferences, and serves as a testifying expert in the area of accountants' professional duties and ethical obligations. Smith is well-versed on Trump's tax plan, having authored the following blog posts/columns: "Key takeaways of Trump's tax plan for business owners" (http://tinyurl.com/le365om), "The votes are in: Introducing the new president's tax plan" (http://tinyurl.com/nxja73y), "Comparing presidential candidates' tax reform plans" (http://tinyurl.com/k2tytgu), and "Trump's tax plan could help businesses, but questions remain (https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/293576). Contact: Lauren Davis, lauren@gregoryfca.com Retirement Planning Ed Slott, CPA Founder, Ed Slott & Company Creator, IRAhelp.com Slott is a New York-based nationally recognized IRA expert, television personality, and best-selling author who has dedicated his life to educating Americans on saving for retirement and the intricacies of IRAs. He was named "The Best Source for IRA Advice" by The Wall Street Journal, and USA Today wrote, "It would be tough to find anyone who knows more about IRAs than CPA Slott." He is the author of "The Retirement Savings Time Bomb … And How to Defuse It" and "Parlay Your IRA into a Family Fortune." His most recent books include "Fund Your Future: A Tax-Smart Savings Plan in Your 20s and 30s" and "The Retirement Decisions Guide: 125 Ways to Save and Stretch Your Wealth." He is the host of the 2015 public television show "Ed Slott's Retirement Road Map," which airs in markets nationwide. He is a frequent columnist and resource for national media and has hosted many best-selling public television specials. Through his firm, Slott provides the highest level of IRA training to financial professionals, CPAs and attorneys; and through his website, he offers free resources to consumers. Website: http://irahelp.com Contact: Mindy Eras, mindy@advisorpr.com Tax Planning Greg Hammer Tax and Wealth Advisor Hammer Financial Group, Inc. Hammer specializes in coordinated, holistic financial planning for Lake County, Ind., and Chicago-area residents who are approaching retirement or currently retired. Bringing tax preparation and planning, Medicare supplements, estate planning, insurance and investments all under one roof, he aims to provide complete and convenient financial solutions for the best interest of the clients he serves. Hammer trains and coaches independent financial advisors nationwide on how to build their business to better serve the holistic financial needs of American families. In particular, he has helped develop and refine processes to integrate tax preparation and Medicare supplement services into a financial advisory practice -- a unique addition within the financial industry designed for the ultimate convenience and benefit of clients at and near retirement. He earned a B.A. in Applied Mathematics with a focus in economics from Yale University and has more than 23 years of experience in the financial services industry. In addition to his series 6, 63, 65 and 26 and life and health licenses, Hammer maintains Master Elite Membership with Ed Slott's Elite IRA Advisor Group for continued study and mastery of IRAs and applicable tax laws. Contact: Mindy Eras, mindy@advisorpr.com Retirement Planning Jeff Warnkin, CPA and CFP The JL Smith Group Warnkin specializes in holistic financial planning for the pre-retired and retired residents of Ohio. As a holistic planner, he incorporates investments, insurance, taxes and estate planning when building financial plans in order create an optimal solution for the retirement years. Warnkin has more than 25 years of experience in the financial services industry, Series 7 and 24 securities licensed, has a Master of Taxation (MT) degree, and is life and health insurance licensed. He has also been personally trained by nationally acclaimed IRA expert Ed Slott, CPA, as a member of the exclusive Ed Slott's Elite IRA Advisor Group. Website: www.JLSmithGroup.com Contact: Mindy Eras, mindy@advisorpr.com Impact on Families and Investors Bijan Golkar CEO, Senior Advisor FPC Investment Advisory Golkar is a Northern California investment advisor that has been a licensed tax preparer since 2007 and earned the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certification in 2013. He is frequently quoted in national media as an expert on investing and financial planning topics. In addition to his duties as the firm's CEO, Golkar provides comprehensive advice to high-net-worth individuals and families. He often creates and leads teams of legal, accounting and insurance experts to help these clients meet their goals. He also consults with small businesses on buyouts, employee benefits and other matters. ProfNet Profile: http://www.profnetconnect.com/bijan_golkar LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/bgolkar/ Expert Contact: bijan@fpcwealth.com Following are links to job listings for staff and freelance writers, editors and producers. You can view these and more job listings on our Job Board: https://prnmedia.prnewswire.com/community/jobs/ Following are links to other news and resources we think you might find useful. If you have an item you think other reporters would be interested in and would like us to include in a future alert, please drop us a line. PROFNET is an exclusive service of PR Newswire. To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/profnet-experts-available-on-tax-reform-dodd-frank-ahca-more-300455385.html


News Article | May 8, 2017
Site: news.yahoo.com

President Donald Trump's health care bill, American Health Care Act (AHCA), was passed in the House last week and has now moved to Congress' upper chamber for approval. Reports however say the debate has already begun regarding who will win and lose from Trump's health care act, which could transform health insurance system in the U.S. The Senate, most likely, will demand changes in the bill, however, if it becomes a law in its current form, it will repeal and replace large portions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare. Any change in the health care system implies insurance will become more affordable for some, while others may lose out on financial support or health care coverage, the New York Times reported. The bill would benefit the wealthy Americans, especially those households with annual incomes above $200,000, as they would not have to pay two major taxes levied on them as part of the Affordable Care Act while the very rich families would fare even better. Tax Policy Center (TPC) — a nonpartisan think tank based in Washington D.C.— said the average household from the top 0.1 percent of income distribution would save around $196,000 a year if the tax on high salaries as well as investments are repealed under Trump's health care, Chicago Tribune reported. Experts say Trump's health care bill gives huge tax cuts to the richer people. Howard Gleckman , a senior fellow at TPC said in March: "The effects are really very dramatic. We found that a typical middle-income family would get a tax cut averaging about $300, while people in the top 0.1 percent would get a tax cut of about $207,000," according to Reuters. Under Trump's health care bill, the Medicare surtax on wages for rich people will be eliminated. In Obamacare, the high-income group used to pay 1.45 percent Medicare payroll tax on wages up to $200,000 ($250,000 if married). They would also pay an additional 2.35 percent on wages above those levels. However, under Trump's health care plan, the surcharge of 2.35 percent would be repealed. That income group will also forego a 3.8 percent Medicare tax on a portion of their investment income, CNN Money reported. The tax cuts for the rich are not randomly chosen. When the Democrats introduced the ACA in 2010, they had increased taxes for the higher-income group to help the benefits of the ACA, and Republicans had opposed those increases at the time. They have been arguing ever since to remove those tax increases. When Trump's health care bill was passed in the House last week, many AHCA supporters framed the vote as an initial victory over those tax increases. Thomas J. Donohue, the president and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, said in a statement the bill would “pull back on job killing tax hikes that have been stifling economic growth across the country.” However, those who are against the new health care bill have criticized it for being beneficial just for the wealthy classes, while neglecting the lower income groups. The opinion seems to have been seconded by Warren Buffet, Berkshire Hathaway Chairman. During Berkshire's annual shareholders' meeting Saturday in Omaha, Nebraska, Buffet said: "So it is a huge tax cut for guys like me…And when there's a tax cut, either the deficit goes up or they get the taxes from somebody else."


-- Experts on health and hunger from across the state, as well as state and local leaders will come together to search for solutions during Feeding Wisconsin's second annual Hunger and Health Summit at Hotel Mead in Wisconsin Rapids, May 9 & 10. The theme of the Summit is "Forward Together."With uncertainty surrounding the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and potential changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, known as FoodShare in Wisconsin), the conference aims to create a space for local direct service agencies, healthcare professionals, advocates, policy experts, and state agencies together to learn, network, and build capacity to improve their efforts to fight hunger, improve health, and strengthen local communities.WHO:        State experts on health and hunger including: Bevan Baker, Milwaukee Health Commissioner;Katharine Broton, Wisconsin HOPE Lab; Jennifer Casey, Executive Director at the Fondy Food Center; Paul Kelleher, PhD, Associate Professor of Bioethics and Philosophy at UW-Madison; Robert Zeaske, Chief Executive Officer, Second Harvest HeartlandWHAT:          Health and Hunger Summit hosted by Feeding WisconsinWHERE:          Hotel Mead, Wisconsin RapidsWHEN:          May 9 & 10"Hunger and health are intimately connected," said David Lee, the executive director at Feeding Wisconsin. "Hunger leads to poor health, which can keep people out of the workforce, reduce children's ability to learn, and increase public healthcare costs. Our intent with the conference is to help hunger fighters, health promoters and other stakeholders throughout the state to network and learn from each other in order to cross-pollinate and accelerate our progress toward a healthy and hunger-free Wisconsin. Given the challenges our friends and neighbors are facing with rising healthcare costs and increased barriers to nutrition assistance, this work now seems more important than ever."In addition to the 20 track sessions led by state and local leaders over the course of the day-and-a-half conference, the event will also feature three general sessions led by national and state leaders to explore emerging issues in hunger, nutrition, and health.The opening general session on May 9 at 1pm will be given by, a researcher at the Wisconsin HOPE Lab, a national leader on the issue of hunger on college campuses. The title of her talk is "Too Distressed to Learn: Hunger and Mental Health in Higher Education."The Breakfast Panel Discussion on May 10 at 8:15 am on "What is 'Healthy?': Deepening Our Understanding to Improve Health and Strengthen Communities through Food and Policy" will feature, Executive Director at the Fondy Food Center,, Associate Professor of Bioethics and Philosophy at University of Wisconsin, Madison, and, Chief Executive Officer, Second Harvest Heartland.The Summit's Keynote Session, "Addressing Public Health and Nutrition in Wisconsin's Largest and Most Diverse City," will be given byon May 10at 1:00 pm.Last year's inaugual, one-day event, attended 180 people from across the state, laid the groundwork for this expanded conference this year."What's really exciting about the Summit is that it brings together people from across the state to collaborate and work together to solve hunger and improve health," said Patti Habeck, President of Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin, the largest food bank in the Feeding Wisconsin network of food banks.###Feeding Wisconsin is the state association of the six regional Feeding America food banks that provide emergency food assistance and access to benefit assistance in every corner of our state. Its mission is help its food banks and partners fight hunger, improve health, and strengthen communities.Its members include: Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin, Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin, Feed My People Food Bank, Second Harvest Heartland, Second Harvest Northern Lakes Food Bank, and Channel-One Regional Food Bank.Together, with its collective network of 1,000 local food pantries located in every county of Wisconsin, the Feeding Wisconsin food banks provide 50 million meals to nearly 600,00 friends and neighbors every year.Visit us at https://www.FeedingWI.org and https://hungerandhealth2017.eventnut.com/ for more information.


TULSA, Okla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Because Medicare plays such a major role in the healthcare system, accounting for 20% of total national health spending in 2014, containing Medicare costs is a priority for policymakers. For Medicare patients who meet hospice eligibility requirements, government pays up to 100% of costs for hospice staff, medical supplies and medications relating to pain and comfort management for patients. Understandably, the hospice industry feels the pressure to control costs. Recently the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released data comparing hospice providers’ ability to be effective stewards of Medicare spending. According to CMS data on Medicare Overcharges, Crossroads Hospice‘s results were 77.5 percent below the industry average. Against national nonprofit hospices, Crossroads scored 78.6 percent lower. The findings contradict a popular belief that nonprofits are better at providing high quality, cost-effective care, said Perry Farmer, President and CEO of Tulsa, OK-based Crossroads Hospice. The report is based on data compiled from approximately 4,000 hospice sites nationwide. Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), CMS in 2014 began reporting on various quality measures to provide greater transparency and insights for consumers about how well hospices perform. “We strive to be effective stewards of our patients’ – and Medicare’s – spending,” said Farmer. “Our goal is to provide the highest level of care in the most appropriate setting and in the most cost-effective way possible.” Medicare pays a per diem rate to providers delivering hospice care at home, or in a nursing home, hospital or inpatient unit if pain or symptoms become too difficult to manage at home. Typically, the rate is higher for services provided outside the home. Total payments to a hospice are limited by an annual statutory cap. Payments in excess of the cap are considered overcharges. The Medicare hospice benefit covers palliative and support services (medical, social and counseling services and prescription drugs) for terminally ill patients with a life expectancy of six months or less if the illness runs its normal course. Making such determinations isn’t an exact science says Farmer. But Crossroads works closely with medical professionals to ensure patients’ conditions and needs are recognized and addressed correctly and efficiently. Providing effective palliative care and prescription drug management in the proper setting helps reduce down costs by minimizing hospital readmissions and other expensive procedures. “We were thrilled by this analysis of Crossroads and its peers,” said Farmer. ”We believe it is a tribute to the commitment of our professional staff, as well as Crossroads’ highly patient-centric approach.” “We welcome the development of an impartial, transparent system to help consumers evaluate hospice providers,” Farmer said. “While we recognize this is still evolving, we are very happy and proud of these early results.” Crossroads Hospice & Palliative Care is committed to being at the forefront of the hospice care industry, to continually shape the way end-of-life care is viewed and administered. The mission of Crossroads is to provide highly unique, comprehensive, and compassionate hospice services to persons experiencing a life-limiting illness and to their caregivers. Visit www.crossroadshospice.com for more information. NOTE TO EDITORS: To speak with Perry Farmer about the CMS hospice quality measures, contact Thomas Derr, SPRYTE Communications: tderr@sprytecom.com or 215.545.4715 x29(o) or 215.620.7723(m).


News Article | May 9, 2017
Site: www.businesswire.com

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--A day after House Republicans voted to send the American Health Care Act to the Senate, Forbes opinion editor Avik Roy put it in context: the “behemoth” that is the US health system has grown up over a half-century and combines the worst features of delivery systems from across the globe—high prices, inefficiency, and lack of coverage. “We have all the cost inefficiencies of a highly public system without any of the actual coverage gains that you would expect from a truly government system,” said Roy, speaking in Scottsdale, Ariz., at The American Journal of Managed Care® (AJMC®)’s spring meeting of the ACO and Emerging Healthcare Delivery Coalition,® May 4-5, 2017. Roy’s address and appearance on a panel about the future of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) offered a high point in an information-packed conference, which also featured: The next ACO Coalition meeting is set for October 26-27, 2017, in Nashville, Tenn. For information, visit the Coalition website here. The American Journal of Managed Care® (AJMC®) is a peer-reviewed, MEDLINE-indexed journal that keeps readers on the forefront of health policy by publishing research relevant to industry decision makers as they work to promote the efficient delivery of high-quality care. AJMC.com is the essential website for managed care professionals, distributing industry updates daily to leading stakeholders. Other titles in the AJMC® family include The American Journal of Accountable Care® and two evidence-based series, Evidence-Based Oncology™ and Evidence-Based Diabetes Management™. These comprehensive offerings bring together stakeholder views from payers, providers, policymakers and other industry leaders in managed care. To order reprints of articles appearing in AJMC® publications, please contact Dr. Jeff Prescott at (609) 716-7777, x 331.

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