CarriageTowneNews.com, Kingston, NH

Letters to the Editor

August 22, 2013

Medicaid Expansion

Medicaid Expansion

The two party system, via gridlock, is failing the American people. Compromise has been shelved for partisan intractability. Will this two party system sell out Granite Staters as well?

Earlier this year, the Democratic-led House of Representatives rejected a casino for cash-strapped New Hampshire. In what appeared as a tit for tat reaction, The Republican-controlled Senate defeated increases in the gas and cigarette taxes despite a deplorable lack of funds for infrastructure improvements such as I93, etc.

Now, New Hampshire citizens are awaiting a decision on Medicaid expansion. Will the state legislature refuse an infusion of $2.5 billion in federal money earmarked to provide expanded healthcare services in NH. Washington is funding $100% of Medicaid expansion from 2014 to 2016, and its portion gradually decreases to 90% of the program’s cost thereafter, in the year 2020.

Medicaid expansion will requires states to offer Medicaid coverage to all workers who make up to 138% of the federal poverty level, currently $15,586 for an individual. That income correlates to an hourly wage of $7.62; therefore, 138% of that wage equals $10.51 per hour. Wow! That sounds like the approximate wages paid by big box stores to their retail employees. Well, maybe not that much.

For the sake of argument, let us assume that the typical, low-paid, New Hampshire employee makes that $10.51 an hour and: 1) pays no federal and, of course, no state income taxes but pays Social Security and Medicare taxes totaling 7.65% of income, or $139/month; 2) pays the state average of $886/month for a one bedroom apartment; 3) pays the state average of $272/month for food; 4) pays $170/month for gas ($3.50/gallon) by driving 45 miles a day to and from work in a car that gets twenty miles a gallon, and does no other driving.

Now, let’s look at the monthly numbers: Income is 420.40 per week times 4.33 weeks in a month equals $1820. Expenses are shelter $886. food $272, gas $170, and Social Security and Medicare taxes of $139 for a total of $1467. Subtraction reveals a remaining availability of $353 a month to buy a car, car insurance, car repairs, clothing forget healthcare and health insurance; It’s obvious such a worker can not afford it.

Text Only
US Politics
Obituaries
  • Alan J. Walker, 68

    Kingston, N.H. — Mr. Alan James Walker, 68, passed away peacefully at his home on July 8, 2014, after a long, brave battle with cancer.

    Continued ...
    20 days
  • James Reese

    Raymond, NH — James Edwin Reese, 74, passed away on Wednesday, July 16, 2014, surrounded by his family and friends at his home in Raymond, N.H. He was the son of John and Ruth Reese, born on Oct. 29, 1939 in Edensburg, Pa. James graduated from Central Cambria High School in Pennsylvania before proudly serving in the U.S. Army as a food inspector. His military service was followed by 31 years with the U.S. Department of Agriculture as a meat inspector. Mr. Reese was an avid outdoorsman and spent much of his time fishing, camping and hiking in the White Mountains. He became involved in the Boy Scouts and enjoyed passing on his vast knowledge of the wilderness to others. Throughout his retirement years he enjoyed woodworking, raising rabbits and working in his garden.

    Continued ...
    20 days 1 Photo
  • Velma J. Reid

    South Hampton, NH — Velma J. Reid, 80, died peacefully on July 17, 2014 at Exeter Hospital, surrounded by family. She was born in Haverhill, Mass. on June 8, 1934, the daughter of the late George C.W. and Alta I. (Kimball) Haynes. A graduate of Haverhill High School, Velma worked at Western Electric until she had children. For years, she was a devoted “stay-at-home” mom who raised her three children in a loving, nurturing environment. She later worked various manufacturing jobs until her retirement. After retiring, she volunteered her time at various organizations and was very involved at the East Kingston Community United Methodist Church as a member of the women’s guild, assisting with the holiday fair, and helping out wherever she could. She had a passion for animals, and would donate money, food, and blankets to the NH SPCA. She loved to sew and made a personalized quilt for every member of her family. She was also a member of the “Ugly Quilts” group, which made blankets and sleeping bags for the homeless using recycled fabric. She is survived by her husband, Clyde Reid of South Hampton, N.H.; daughter, Pam Eaton of Danville, N.H.; son and daughter-in-law, Douglas and Kim Reid of Raymond, N.H.; daughter, Shirley Reid of South Hampton, N.H.; two sisters, Gwen Stuart of Haverhill, and Norma Taplin of Dracut; four grandchildren, Cheryl and Marc Welch, and Kristen and Joshua Reid, and several nieces and nephews.

    Continued ...
    20 days 1 Photo
  • Carleen A. Knowlton, 80

    Danville, NH — Carleen A. (Rhoadhouse) Knowlton, 80, of Danville and formerly of Hampstead, died on July 7, 2014, at her home.

    Continued ...
    27 days 1 Photo
  • Miriam O. (Graham) Graham, 84

    Kingston, NH — Miriam O. (Graham) Graham, 84, a resident of Kingston since 2001, and former longtime resident of Grafton, Mass., died peacefully, surrounded by her family, on July 11, 2014, following a long illness.

    Continued ...
    27 days 1 Photo

Stocks