Bill introduced to extend Delphi retiree health care tax credit through 2027

Credit: Jim Noelker

Credit: Jim Noelker

A bill to protect a health care tax credit for Delphi retirees and other qualified pensioners through 2027 was introduced in the House of Representatives Wednesday.

The Health Coverage Tax Credit Reauthorization Act of 2023 would — if passed and signed into law — reauthorize the tax credit through 2027.

The measure provides refundable tax credits to cover more than 70% of the cost of health insurance premiums for retirees whose pensions have been taken over by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp., such as hundreds of Delphi salaried retirees in the Dayton area.

The credit “is critical in bridging the gap to affordable healthcare for retirees,” said Washington Twp. resident and retired Delphi manager Tom Rose.

U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton introduced the bill with legislators from Maine, New York and Michigan.

“The Health Coverage Tax Credit helps retirees afford their health care, especially as they age. This tax credit is especially important for the Delphi salaried retirees, whose pensions and other benefits were slashed through no fault of their own,” Turner said in a statement. “During this time of record inflation, it is critical that we ensure retirees are able to access affordable health care. Providing a long-term reauthorization of the Health Coverage Tax Credit would give over tens of thousands of salaried retirees peace of mind.”

“Every Michigander deserves access to quality, affordable health care. That includes Delphi salaried Retirees who lost their retirement benefits through no fault of their own and hardworking Michiganders who lost their jobs because of bad trade deals,” said Rep. Dan Kildee, a Michigan Democrat.

After securing one-year authorizations in 2020 and 2021, the tax credit expired early in 2022.

A reauthorization bill passed the House in 2022 but was stripped from the bill during Senate negotiations. At the moment, the credit remains expired.

Salaried retirees from a then-bankrupt auto parts producer Delphi saw their pensions diminished when the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. assumed control of the company’s pensions in 2009, reduced by up to 70% in some cases, all while General Motors, Delphi’s former owner, continued to support the pensions of hourly, union-represented Delphi workers.

The PBGC’s takeover of the pensions affected more than 20,000 salaried retirees nationwide — including over 5,000 in Ohio and hundreds in the Dayton area. At one time, Delphi employed more than 10,000 area residents

In January, Turner introduced the Susan Muffley Act in the House with the support of the bill’s original co-sponsors.

That act, if passed and signed into law, would restore the full pensions of Delphi salaried retirees. The bill fell short of Senate passage in the previous Congress.

About the Author