DALLAS, Nov. 4, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- A Constitutional amendment to create free health care for everyone in Colorado would impose very high tax rates on senior citizens, even though they would get almost no benefits from the measure, according to a new study.
Amendment 69 would give a new state entity, ColoradoCare, the power to set doctor and hospital fees throughout the state for virtually every medical procedure. It would make ColoradoCare the sole payer of all medical bills. It would provide care without deductibles and copayments. And it would be paid for by a 10 percent tax on the incomes of all Coloradans - rich and poor, young and old. " Colorado will become like Canada or Britain if the proponents get their way," said Linda Gorman a health economist who produced the study for the Goodman Institute, an independent research organization. "Medical care will be free for everyone, but there may be long waits for elective surgery, such as hip and knee replacements; and expensive cancer drugs may not be available." A surprising feature of the measure is that senior citizens will be forced to contribute to the plan even though they will continue paying premiums and payroll taxes for their enrollment in Medicare. "Seniors will face higher taxes in Colorado than anywhere else in the nation," said Gorman. Elderly wage earners making only the minimum wage will get hit with a 10 percent tax on their earnings, according to the report. Beyond $24,000 of retirement income, they will have to pay 10 percent of their income from pensions, dividends, interest, capital gains and withdraws from IRA and 401(k) accounts. "Seniors will even have to pay a 10 percent tax on their Social Security benefits," said Gorman. "They will also have to pay taxes on tax exempt income."