House Reaches Tentative Budget Deal
Shortly before midnight, the House released a 144-page discussion draft of a tentative two-year budget deal negotiated between Congress and the White House. The deal would set budget levels for two years, lifts the debt ceiling until March 2017, removes the threat of a government shutdown until October 2017 and addresses the Medicare Part B premium spikes for some of the affected beneficiaries. The pay-fors for the deal include extending the Medicare sequester for another year (through 2025), repealing the Affordable Care Act requirement that large employers (employers with more than 200 employees) automatically enroll employees in their health plans, establishing new payment rules for hospital outpatient department services and selling oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, among other items. VNAA will monitor the progress of this deal closely.