Medicare for All Calculator

The Medicare for All Calculator is a free, online, user-friendly tool based on a proposed financing plan for H.R. 676, the Expanded and Improved Medicare for All bill in Congress. With this calculator,mfacalc.com, anyone can enter information anonymously about the number of people in the household with health insurance, their current income, a typical year’s health insurance premium and out of pocket health costs. Once this information is entered the calculator will determine the savings (in most cases) that HR 676 would provide if enacted.

H.R. 676 would expand Medicare to cover all Americans, regardless of age, income or disability. It eliminates ALL individual healthcare costs, premiums, co-pays and deductibles. It adds comprehensive healthcare coverage, including dental, vision, mental health, long-term care, prescription drugs and other benefits.

We are indebted to Kris Hardy, owner of Albuquerque Software for his role in developing the Medicare for All Calculator. And to Health Action New Mexico for their sponsorship.

A group of concerned citizens, many who are former healthcare providers and associates, have formed the Medicare for All Speakers Bureau. We have created a 30 minute Power Point presentation which compares single-payer health system myths vs facts, gives the pertinent points of the bill and a picture of the financial analysis done by Gerald Friedman, PhD., Economics Professor at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, on how to pay for this bill if enacted, “Funding HR 676”, published in 2013.

If your group would like to schedule a presentation email  mc4allnm@gmail.com for more information.

Report to the PDA Action Alert Team: Key Outcomes of the 2019 Legislative Session

Hi, Everybody,

I want to begin by giving a huge thank you to everyone for all your email and phone messages urging our legislators to support legislation of importance to the progressive community. It is heartening to receive feedback from legislators agreeing with our sentiments.  Sure, there were the occasional responses disagreeing with our requests, but that just added evidence that they hear us and know that they have to deal with us.

There was a boatload of progressive legislation this year, as was expected because of the increase in number of progressive legislators.  We ended up following about one hundred bills, memorials, and joint resolutions.  About 60 of those were scheduled for committee hearings, and you emailed or called committee members about them.  Because of the progressive trend in the Legislature and the support of the governor’s office, much of the legislation of importance to us passed.  There were exceptions, often caused by conservative Democrats joining with Republicans to defeat good bills.

Both the good and the bad are discussed below:

  • This legislature was finally able to pass a bill for a State Ethics Commission (SB 668).  This bi- or multi-partisan commission receives and investigates complaints against public officials and employees, government contractors and lobbyists.
  • Renewable energy, climate crisis:
    • SB 489, the Energy Transition Act, passed.  It includes strong Renewable Portfolio Standards with a target of, among other things, zero carbon dioxide emissions from retail sales of electricity by 2045.  A disappointment was that this Act also included a provision for the costs of abandoning the current, fossil fueled generating plants to be borne solely by the public, rather than sharing those costs by the public and by the shareholders of the plant owners.
    • SB 518, New Solar Market Development Tax Credit, passed overwhelmingly in the Senate, had passed its last committee in the House, but never got a vote on the House floor.  Another casualty of more bills to consider than time to hear them for a floor vote.
    • HB 210, Community Solar Act, passed the House but didn’t make it through the Senate committee process in time to be heard on the Senate floor.  This bill would have established requirements for community solar systems that subscribers could use to meet their energy needs.  A community solar system would supply its power to the public utility serving the area, which would bill subscribers at rates determined by the Public Regulation Commission.
  • Health care:
    • HB 416 and SB 405, Medicaid Buy-In, to allow members of the public to participate in Medicaid by paying the costs, was tabled in House Appropriations while the Senate worked on the budget.  There is $142,000 in the budget for the “study and administrative development of the Medicaid Buy-In plan.”  This allows HSD to prepare to implement the Medicaid Buy-In, including seeking federal waivers to receive federal financing.
    • HB 308, Dental Therapists, passed.
    • SB 337, Surprise Billing Protection Act, passed unanimously.
    • HB 436, Align Health Insurance Law with Federal Law, passed.  This bill amends sections of the NM law governing Insurance plans to include many of the provisions of the ACA, such as prohibiting denial of coverage of pre-existing conditions, prohibiting charging higher premiums for disability, and eliminating co-pays for preventive services.
    • HB 88 and SB 101 to establish a Health Care Value and Access Commission did not progress in the respective committees, but money was allocated in the budget to work towards the goals of these bills:
      • Health Care Value and Access Commission: $275,000 to set up a commission that will review and make recommendations on the ways health care is currently being provided in New Mexico.
      • All Payers Database:  $900,000 to set up a much needed statewide database to track, in accordance with privacy laws, medical procedure usage rates, cost, outcomes and more to give the state data that it currently does not have and needs to better support positive health care outcomes.
    • SB 279 and HB 295, Health Security Act, also died in both House and Senate committees.  HM 92, Health Security Plan Analysis, passed the House and there is $389,000 in the budget for Legislative Finance to complete a fiscal analysis of the Health Security Act, which is the first step needed before implementing the Act.
  • Permanent funds for early childhood:  HJR 1 passed the House, but died in the Senate Finance Committee.  A replacement, SB 671, backed by the governor, also died in the Senate Finance Committee.
  • Voting rights:
    • SB 672, Early & Auto Voter Registration, passed. It combined earlier bills HB 84 and HB 86 to provide for voter registration at early voting sites, at polling places on election day, and to provide for automatic voter registration at Motor Vehicle Department offices as well as some other offices subject to negotiation.
    • HB 57, Restore Felon Voting rights, died in committee.
    • HB 55, National Popular Vote, passed.  This bill commits New Mexico to join a compact of states that agree to assign their electoral college votes to the winner of the national popular vote, whether or not the state itself voted for the winner of the national popular vote.
  • Increasing minimum wage:  Several bills with differing increases in the minimum wage failed, but were replaced by SB 437, Raise Minimum Wage & Create Separate One, and was passed.  This bill, as introduced, would have raised the minimum wage to 11 dollars per hour by 2022.  It was amended to raise it to 12 dollars per hour by 2022, and to cost of living increases thereafter.  The bill also provides for a minimum wage of $8.50 for students in secondary schools working outside of school hours.
  • Increasing salaries of state employees:  A section of HB 2, General Appropriation Action of 2019, increases the salaries of state employees by an average of 4 percent, except that the salaries for teachers are increased by at least 6%.  HB 2 passed.
  • Reducing small loan interest rates to 36%:  HB 22, HB 375, and HB 386 were either not scheduled for hearing or died in committee.
  • Right to work laws:  HB 85, Union Security Agreements, passed.  This bill precludes local governments from adopting or continuing in effect laws that prohibit agreements requiring membership in a labor organization as a condition of employment; i.e., this bill prohibits local governments from establishing so-called right to work laws.
  • Raising income taxes for high earners:  HB 6, Tax Changes, includes a provision to increase the rates for high earners.  For example, married couples filing joint returns will pay income taxes at a rate of 5.9% for earnings in excess of $315,000. HB 6 passed.
  • Background checks for firearm sales:  SB 8, Firearm Sale Background Check, passed and was signed by the governor.
  • Decriminalizing abortion:  HB 51, Decriminalize Abortion, passed the House but failed in the Senate.
  • Gender equality:  SB 25, No Differential Pricing Based On Gender, passed.
  • Decriminalizing recreational use of marijuana:  HB 356, Cannabis Regulation Act, passed the House, but died in the Senate Finance Committee.
  • Hemp:  HB 581, Hemp Manufacturing Act, passed.  This bill allows and regulates production, testing, research, and manufacturing of hemp products.
  • Healthy soil act:  HB 204 passed.
  • Public banking:  HM 41, Study State-Owned Bank, passed its only scheduled committee hearing, but was not considered on the House floor.
  • School ratings:  SB 229, School Support & Accountability Act, passed.  This bill repeals the A-B-C-D-F schools rating act, to be replaced by criteria developed by the Legislative Education Study Committee.

If you want to check the status of other bills of interest, or to see if the governor has signed bills, go here.

Until next year,

Pat Bartels, Laura Stokes, and Paul Stokes

Climate Disruption Film Festival April 13th

9:15 am

Doors Open

9:30 am

Greeting:  Moderator Sara Beltran Caro

Opening and Presentation:  Sarah Propst, Cabinet Secretary

EMNRD – Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Development

10:00 am

Film:  Sacred Land, Sacred Water   Intro:  Craig Barth

 Q&A:  Donald T. Phillips, Lewis Jacobs, Craig Barth

11:15 am

U.S. Representative Debra Haaland – presentation with GWE & Q&A

11:45 am

CAVU Films plus Q&A with producer

What isn’t there to love about New Mexico?

A Changing Landscape

Is New Mexico ready to be the next Saudi Arabia?

1:00 pm

Lunch, SBCC dining area: bag lunch (bring your own), food trucks

Visit Tables and “Meet and Greet” other participants

1:30 pm

Land Commissioner Stephanie Garcia Richard – presentation & Q&A

2:00 pm

Film:  Paris to Pittburgh

3:00 pm

Panel:  What can we do HERE! and NOW! to mitigate Climate Disruption?

Panelists: Rep. Melanie Stansbury; Eleanor Bravo-Food & Water Watch;

Joan Brown-Interfaith Power & Light; Camilla Feibelman-Sierra Club;

Tom Solomon-350.org; Athena Christodoulou-NM Solar Energy Assoc.; Ray Powell-former Land Commissioner; Youth

4:00 pm

Participants’ Commitment to Action

4:15 pm

Film:  Call of Life Facing the Mass Extinction or Rooted Lands

5:30 pm

Closing

PDACNM Newsletter, March 5, 2019 – PDACNM meeting March 13

Read the Newsletter Here!

NEW PDA Group – “Whiteness and Privilege Explored”

PDA continues with its commitment to anti-racist organizing with a study group that will explore whiteness and privilege. Co-facilitators are Kathleen O’Malley, Karen Bentrup and Susan Kerr (many-decade antiracism trainer).

We have been exploring issues around racism and recognizing our own racism that is present at a deeply unconscious level. While we progressives believe in the equality of all persons, we need to see how embedded in each of us is the racism that has been present in the U.S. since its inception. We will be reading, listening to podcasts, watching videos, talking and challenging each other.

We welcome white people and people of color in this new exploration space. We fully recognize that the people of color in the group are NOT responsible for teaching, fixing, or guiding those of us who are white. That’s our white people work.

We hope that you consider joining our work group.  Please email KarenBentrup@yahoo.com BEFORE MARCH 1st if you want to participate. All the people who signed up at the February PDA gathering and everyone who emails Karen will receive an email in early March detailing this program.

Why talk about whiteness? Because we can’t talk about racism without it.

PDACNM Newsletter, February 25, 2019 – PDACNM meeting March 13


February 13 PDACNM Meeting

On Feb. 13, PDACNM was honored to hear the testimony of Kelly and Justin involving their prison experiences and lives post prison. Their stories had a strong and emotional impact on the audience. We wish that many more people could listen to their heartbreaking experiences which go a long way in bringing awareness of this often ignored population to the public. Selinda has been working tirelessly for House Bill 57 which originally would have given voting privileges to people currently serving time in prison. However, due to opposition from a sizable number of legislators who thought this bill went too far in giving voting rights to violent criminals, the authors of the bill agreed to amend the bill. This amendment does make voting more accessible to more people which we feel is a positive step in the voting rights movement. On Feb. 21, Selinda wrote, “This amendment will allow extended voting access to our citizens on probation and parole. It will still prohibit voting from Department of Corrections (prisons) but does not impact folks confined in county jails including those on probation and parole violations not adjudicated.”

“But the signal from our organizers behind the walls in New Mexico indicated this is still progress and that strategically it allows us to continue pushing this conversation. They shared that so many behind the walls are actually thinking and talking about voting when those conversations never existed for so many. So, I am receiving my inspiration again from our citizens behind the walls! ”

Read the Newsletter Here!

Education Not Deportation Advocacy Day

Thank you for having me today at La Red. Please forward this to the rest of the partners. Our Education Not Deportation Campaign seeks to increase our state’s investment in public education while reducing the investment in federal immigration enforcement.

Tuesday, February 19th a day full of experience-based learning at the state’s capitol. During the day we will visit legislators offices and advocate for the bills that are directly impacting our communities. For preparation participants will engage in advocacy activities and civic engagement training on Saturday, Feb 16th. We would love to invite you and your members to join us for this day.

To be part of our day long advocacy program register for this day please fill this registration form. If you cannot participate in our program but you would still like to help, make sure to be at the Rotunda at 2pm to catch our closing of the day with a visual of people power!

What: Education Not Deportation: The Rise
When: February 19
Registration
Facebook Event
If you have any questions you can contact me at this email or at 505 210 2966

Sincerely,
Felipe Rodriguez
Campaign Manager
NM Dream Team