Press Releases

 

Friday
May152009

WH Media - Protecting American Credit Card Holders 

President Obama Discusses Need for Credit Card Reform;

Urges Congress to Pass Comprehensive Legislation

 

Today, President Obamawill holda town hall meeting in Rio Rancho, New Mexico where hewilldiscuss the need for immediate reform of the credit card industry and his commitment to signing the Credit Card Bill of Rights into law by Memorial Day.

 

Americans need a durable and successful flow of credit in our economy, but we can’t tolerate profits that depend upon misleading working families. For too long, credit card contracts have been deceptively complicated, often leading consumers to pay more than they reasonably expect due to unfair practices. Every year, Americans pay around $15 billion in penalty fees. Nearly 80 percent of American families have a credit card, and 44 percent of families carry a balance on their credit cards.

 

“It’s time for strong and reliable protections for our consumers. It’s time for reform that is built on transparency, accountability, and mutual responsibility – values fundamental to the new foundation we seek to build for our economy,” President Obamawill say, according to prepared remarks.

 

In the Senate and throughout the campaign, President Obama called for measures to strengthen consumer protection in the credit card market. And just last month he met with representatives from the credit card industry to discuss the impact of the current economic crisis on consumers. The Federal Reserve has taken a strong first step toward improving disclosures and ending unfair practices. This week the Senate, under the leadership of Chairman Dodd, Ranking Member Shelby and Senator Levin, brought a strong bill to the floor that would codify and strengthen these regulations. The House, building on the work of Chairman Frank and Representatives Maloney and Gutierrez, already passed such a bill in a strong bipartisan vote. Today, President Obamawillcall on Congress to take final action to pass a credit card reform bill that protects American consumers that can be signed into law by Memorial Day.

 

 

Principles for Long-term Credit Card Reform

 

  • First, there have to be strong and reliable protections for consumers – protections that ban unfair rate increases and forbid abusive fees and penalties. The days of “any time, any reason” rate hikes and late fee traps have to end.
  • Second, all the forms and statements that credit card companies send out have to have plain language that is in plain sight. No more fine print, no more confusing terms and conditions. We’re going to require clarity and transparency from now on.
  • Third, we have to make sure that people can shop for a credit card that meets their needs without fear of being taken advantage of. That means requiring firms to make all their contract terms easily accessible and giving consumers the information they need to go online and do some comparison shopping. It also means requiring firms to offer at least one simple, straightforward credit card that offers the strongest protections along with the simplest terms and prices.
  • Finally, we need more accountability in the system, so that we can hold those responsible who do engage in deceptive practices that hurt families and consumers. To do that, we’ll beef up monitoring and enforcement, and also penalties for any violations of the law.

 

The Administration supports the legislative efforts of both the House and the Senate. Below we are highlighting the critical elements of reform in both chambers of Congress.

  • Ban Unfair Rate Increases
  • Prevent Unfair Fee & Interest Rate Charges
  • Plain Sight /Plain Language Disclosures
  • Market Transparency
  • Accountability
  • Protections for Students and Young People
Thursday
May142009

NHGOP STATEMENT ON GOV LYNCH'S COMMENTS ON SAME-SEX MARRIAGE 

CONCORD – Today, former New Hampshire Governor and Republican State Committee Chairman John H. Sununu released the following statement on Governor Lynch’s comments on same-sex marriage:

 

“Once again Governor Lynch has discovered a way to be against something and for it at the same time. I wish he would spend as much time trying to cut spending in the budget as he obviously has trying to find a way to straddle the same-sex marriage issue and wiggle out of his commitment to traditional marriage.”

 

 

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION ON GOVERNOR LYNCH’S COMMENTS ON SAME-SEX MARRIAGE

 

Thursday
May142009

DHHS Releases Study Comparing NH Medicaid Members Receiving Primary Care Services

Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Office of Medicaid Business and Policy (OMBP) announces the release of a study comparing the experience New Hampshire Medicaid members received in different primary care settings. This study titled Comparison of Primary Care Received by NH Medicaid Members at Different Practice Settings is the first of its kind to examine the performance of practices throughout the state on key access, quality, utilization and cost measures.

 

“This report provides data and analysis that will be key to our success in managing health care costs of complex client cases balancing service costs, quality, access and outcomes,” said DHHS Commissioner Nicholas Toumpas. “It will also inform policy decisions focused on the realignment and integration of service delivery systems to one that is client centric.”

 

The study grouped New Hampshire Medicaid providers into five practice settings: hospital-based clinics and outpatient departments; federally qualified health centers (FQHCs); rural health clinics (RHCs); Dartmouth Hitchcock Clinics (DHC); and other office-based physician practices. DHHS set out to answer a number of questions including: Where do they receive primary care? Do members differ in where they receive care based on eligibity group, age, gender and health status? Does care for certain child and adult conditions vary by primary care practice setting? Does member service utilization vary by practice setting? Do member per month payments vary by practice setting?

 

The study found the majority of NH Medicaid members (34%) received primary care from physician office-based practices; hospital-based clinics and DHC each provided care to 15% of members; FQHCs (10%) and RHCs (5%) saw the remainder of NH Medicaid members (20% of members were not assigned either because they received no primary care or did not seek care from a primary care provider). Hospital-based clinics and office-based providers saw significantly sicker members. FQHCs and RHCs saw members with significantly lower risk.

 

There were a number of differences – significantly lower or higher rates – in effectiveness of care measures (e.g., well-child visits) across the primary care practice settings. Overall, NH Medicaid providers’ rates were higher than national Medicaid rates in most of the measures studied (despite the fact that the national rates are from managed care programs and NH Medicaid does not have a managed care program). However, there is still room for improvement.

 

“The NH Medicaid Program, like all public programs, must maximize the return on investment of every dollar spent on providing health care services to our 111,000 NH Medicaid beneficiaries,” said Medicaid Director Katie Dunn. “This data points us in the direction of where improvements need to be made in access and quality of care.”

 

Administrative eligibility and claims data from Calendar Year (CY) 2006 for more than 88,000 Medicaid members were used in this study to assign members to one of the primary care provider groups and to calculate the measures used in this study.

 

To read the complete study with all measures by primary care practice setting or for a copy of the Issue Brief visit DHHS’ website: www.dhhs.state.nh.us

Thursday
May142009

Today's Top Stories on NetRight Nation 

US Speeding Towards Financial Crash:Two related stories signaled investors today to push the dollar lower in overseas trading last night. First, former GAO chief David Walker notes a bond warning from Moody's that US Treasury bonds may lose their top rating — and that could cost us dearly.

 

Obama Grants SEIU Wish at Expense of California: This is not the first time such heavy-handed aggression has been displayed by Obama enforcers on behalf of union allies. To the Chrysler bondholders who refused a staggering 70 percent loss on their investment, the Obama administration resorted to a strategy of threats and coercion in an attempt to secure their compliance, as ALG News reported earlier this month. The United Auto Workers (UAW) union was the clear recipient of the "deal," being handed 55 percent of company stock.

 

Fannie Mae is Losing More Money:Yes, I know. It's hard to believe. Fannie Mae continues to lose money and, even more surprisingly, isn't likely to ever pay taxpayers back for all of the billions that it already has squandered. Rather, it says it will need more bail-out funds — probably another $110 billion this year alone.

 

Feds are Broke But Keep Right on Spending: There is a cleverly constructed sentence in the AP report about the 2009 budget deficit being $89 billion higher than expected, which will raise the projected annual deficit to $1.8 trillion, or nearly four times as much as the previous record. Here's how AP explained it: "The unprecedented red ink flows from the deep recession, the Wall Street bailout, the cost of President Barack Obama's economic stimulus bill, as well as a structural imbalance between what the government spends and what it takes in (emphasis added)." In sports journalism, such a sentence is called covering for the home team, which in this case includes the present and previous White House occupants and the present majority in Congress.

 

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Thursday
May142009

GMFRW - Sharing Memories of our First Republican Experiences 

Sharing Memories of our First Republican Experiences

Manchester, NH: The Greater Manchester Federated Republican Women (GMFRW) is pleased to announce that its next meeting will be held on Monday, May 18 from 6:00-8:00 p.m. at the Ukrainian Catholic Church in the church hall at 54 Walnut Street in Manchester, NH.

The meeting will be a social format and will include updates about the latest edition of The Quill newsletter, as well as upcoming events and consideration of this year’s Primary Election Guide. Attendees will be encouraged to share their stories about their first Republican memories.

Attendance is open to men and women, and a $5 meeting donation for non-members and those not eligible for membership is requested. Questions and RSVP to club President Kathy Cusson-Cail at gmfrw2008@earthlink.net. The Greater Manchester Federated Republican Women fosters the education and involvement of women in the political and public service process, including providing opportunities to become a candidate, greater access to meeting with local and high level candidates, and to assist on political campaigns. It is one of several such groups across New Hampshire, and part of a state and national Federation.