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Officials Discuss Health Financing Plan

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The director of health reform for Governor Peter Shumlin says the biggest threat to a plan to make Vermont the first state in the country with a universal, publicly funded health care system was the federal government.

Lawrence Miller and other health care reform officials on Wednesday detailed the financing reports that led Governor Shumlin to abandon his long-sought goal of single-payer health care. Miller, the chief of health care reform said the federal government was the greatest threat.  "I view the federal relationship as the biggest risk. Not just what they would contribute financially, but the rules and regulations and laws within which we have to work.”

Shumlin announced on Dec. 17 that he was dropping the proposal, saying it required tax increases too big for the state to absorb.

The plan would have required an 11.5 percent payroll tax and an income tax separate from the one the state already has of up to 9.5 percent.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.  Copyright 2014. All rights reserved.

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