Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Fayette | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Warren | Webster
Davis Motor Sales banner ad

Whitfield Introduces Bill to Protect Coal Miners’ Health Care Benefits

CCMGraphicFRANKFORT, Ky. (7/8/13) – U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield (KY-01), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Energy and Power, today introduced the Caring for Coal Miners Act.  The legislation, co-sponsored by Rep. David McKinley (R – WV) and Rep. Shelley Moore Capito (R – WV), ensures continued health care coverage for miners in danger of losing their benefits resulting from the bankruptcy of Patriot Coal Company.  

“It is critical that we protect the health care benefits of the thousands of Kentucky miners who have worked hard their entire careers to earn those benefits,” stated Whitfield.  “That is why I have introduced the Caring for Coal Miners Act to ensure that the hardworking miners who took to the mines day in and day out don’t lose the health care that they have rightfully earned.”

“I have met with retirees from West Virginia, and I hear their concerns,” said Congresswoman Capito.  “It is important that as we continue to address the complicated issues that resulted from the bankruptcy of Patriot Coal Company that we find the best solutions moving forward.   The Caring for Coal Miners Act ensures continued health care coverage for the retirees who are in danger of losing their benefits.  It is also an important step forward in protecting the benefits that were promised to hardworking miners in states like West Virginia and Kentucky.”  

According to Whitfield, the Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection that Patriot filed in July 2012 may impact the health care benefits of roughly 1,500 people and their families in Whitfield’s district.  They claim that they will not be able to emerge from bankruptcy without significant changes to retiree health care obligations.  As a result, a bankruptcy court recently ruled that Patriot Coal is authorized to transition retirees into a Voluntary Employee Beneficiary Association (VEBA).

There is uncertainty regarding the solvency and availability of the VEBA due to the United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) recent appeal of the court’s ruling. Whitfield’s legislation addresses this issue by making miners in danger of losing their health care benefits due to Patriot Coal’s bankruptcy eligible for UMWA’s 1993 Benefit Plan.    

In early June, Whitfield introduced a discussion draft to begin the process of formally introducing the Caring for Coal Miners Act.  Whitfield acknowledges that there are challenges with retirees’ pensions, but the most immediate concern is the availability of health care benefits, which is why he is taking this immediate step.

“Protecting the health care benefits is just the first step in what may very well amount to a multifaceted process,” concluded Whitfield.
    
SurfKY News
Information provided by Chris Pack

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013
Started 11/8/2013

In Other News...

Louisville Man Charged in Madisonville for Allegedly Selling Meth

MADISONVILLE, Ky. (4/19/14) — After a report of a many throwing knives during an argument in a parking lot, a… Read More

Earlington Traffic Stop Results in Meth Arrests

EARLINGTON, Ky. (4/18/14) — A traffic safety checkpoint netted two arrests by Kentucky State Police 9:17 p.m. Thursday,… Read More
Started 11/8/2013

Most Read This Week (Site-Wide)

April 16, 2014 19318

UPDATE- Sheriff's Office Following Leads…

in Top Stories by Taylor Riley, SurfKY News Reporter
April 17, 2014 4300

KSP Nabs St. Charles Man Wanted by U.S.…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
April 15, 2014 3149

Police Searching for Sureway's 'Baby…

in Top Stories by Taylor Riley, SurfKY News Reporter
April 16, 2014 3089

Sheriff's Deputies Nab Central City…

in Top Stories by Sheriff Curtis McGehee
April 15, 2014 2785

Multi-Agency Investigation Leads to Drug…

in Top Stories by Lori Blakeley

Most Read Stories from Hopkins County

April 17, 2014 4300

KSP Nabs St. Charles Man Wanted by U.S.…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
April 15, 2014 3149

Police Searching for Sureway's 'Baby…

in Top Stories by Taylor Riley, SurfKY News Reporter
April 15, 2014 2785

Multi-Agency Investigation Leads to Drug…

in Top Stories by Lori Blakeley
April 15, 2014 1081

State Approves $500K for Hopkins Archery…

in Top Stories by Rebecca Hanchett
April 18, 2014 1007

Talking Teen Trashed Telephone Pole,…

in Top Stories by MPD

Most Read Stories from Owensboro

April 15, 2014 1742

Owensboro Police Investigate Auto Accident

in News by Michael Hathaway
April 15, 2014 1383

Owensboro Parks Offers Tennis Lessons

in News by Britni Bunn
April 15, 2014 1046

Happenings and Meetings Owensboro

in News by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News
April 16, 2014 865

New Home Health Care Opens in Owensboro

in News by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News
April 15, 2014 804

OPD’s Annual 5K Run and Police Awareness…

in News by Owensboro Police Department

Most Read Stories from Muhlenberg County

April 16, 2014 3089

Sheriff's Deputies Nab Central City…

in Top Stories by Sheriff Curtis McGehee
April 15, 2014 2057

'Walk Right Back' An Everly Brother's…

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News Reporter
April 15, 2014 1913

Local MCHS Students Train at Job Corps

in Top Stories by Karen Robinson
April 15, 2014 1555

Thumbpickers Unite at Mose Rager Day

in Top Stories by Paul McRee, SurfKY News Reporter
April 16, 2014 1202

South Carrollton Woman Injured in Head-on…

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke

SurfKY News Group, Inc. Central Office & Printing Division
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431  •  270.452.2249 (fax)
Main Number: 270.452.2727 (phone)  •  Printing Division Direct Line: 270.821.8600 (phone)

SurfKY Owensboro News Bureau
920 Frederica St. / Suite 210  •  Owensboro, KY 42301  •  270.683-8060 (phone)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social 06social 21social 22social 04social 03