The proposal from the Internal Revenue Service to consider volunteer firefighters as "employees" for the purpose of health insurance is just the latest in a long line of surprises in the Affordable Care Act - Obamacare.
Whether it comes to fruition or not is yet to be seen. Like many other aspects of this law, the feds are not willing to talk about this latest revelation.
Bipartisan legislation has been introduced to block the IRS from interpreting the law to mean it can levy a tax if volunteer firefighters are not covered by their "employers."
And, according to the law, an employer must have 50 full-time employees to fall under the requirements of providing insurance. But the IRS's proposal would lump together different VFDs in the same community as one "employer."
If this becomes the rule, how would it effect an emergency services district? Here at home, and other communities across Texas, ESDs have some oversight on VFDs. Some also include volunteer EMS departments.
This sounds like more of a ploy to levy more taxes and to shore up this sagging Obamacare law that has had nothing but problems since its enactment by Democrats - who, by the way, continue to tout it as the best thing to come along in decades.
There have been lies, there have been technical issues, security questions and much more. Still Democrats won't admit they messed up in a big way.
House Democrat Nancy Pelosi said it best when she suggested it could be read after it was passed.
Well, the reading is going slow and the interpretations are excruciating.
The bottom line is, health care is headed toward social medicine very quickly with a person's medical treatment squarely in the hands of insurance clerks and bureaucrats. Doctors already have limited say in a patient's care - it will only get worse.