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Forum covers Medicare, Social Security & Affordable Care ActSubmitted: 08/30/2013
Story By Adam Fox

Forum covers Medicare, Social Security & Affordable Care Act
RHINELANDER - October will be a big month for the Affordable Care Act.

If you don't have insurance, that's when federal exchange plans will be available.

But many Wisconsinites still have questions on how the program will affect them.

That's why seniors met in Rhinelander Friday.The Wisconsin Alliance for Retired Americans hosted the forum. Billy Feitlinger, executive director of the alliance, discussed Medicare, Social Security and the Affordable Care Act.

His group supports the healthcare reform because it will keep Medicare in the green for an additional nine years.

But some like Gloria Oberneder know people who feel lost in the system.

"Most people who become seniors and are on that low income, if they are not on Medicaid and they do make a little more money, they are always searching for answers for different things and they are confused,"Oberneder said.

Another concern was rising policy cost. A new Rand Corporation study says the reform won't have widespread cost increases for policies.

But experts like Robert Laszewski of the Health Policy & Strategy Associates projected an increase in Wisconsin at a June summit in Wausau.

"Wisconsin is one of the states projected to have the biggest increases," Laszewski said. "That's because the the affordable care act sets very high standards for what package of insurance looks like."

The forum also focused heavily on Social Security. That's because Congress is preparing for another fight over spending cuts and the debt ceiling, and Billy Feitlinger worries Social Security could be targeted.

"There should be some reform to Social Security, but it should not be in the context of the federal deficit or debt ceiling because Social Security hasn't contributed one penny to the federal deficit."

That's because funding for Social Security has always been automatically taken out of our paychecks. But more Baby Boomers are entering the program, and under current obligations the $2.7 trillion fund will run dry by 2033.





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 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 01/22/2018

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

Winter weather warnings and advisories are in effect for our entire viewing area until midnight tonight, and some areas have already seen more than 5 inches of snow. We'll keep you up to date on the latest forecast and take you live outside to bring you the current road situation.

We'll show you the snow conditions at Granite Peak Ski Resort in Wausau and find out how today's snowfall helps improve the ski area.

And a plan to put a roundabout in Rhinelander is leaving area residents concerned especially with how trucks would handle them. We talk to a Department of Transportation official and a truck driver to get their view of the plan.

We'll bring you the details on these stories and more tonight on Newswatch 12 - news from where you live.


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ABBOTSFORD -
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In a press release, Colby-Abbotsford Police Chief Jason Bauer says the suspect is 26-year-old Tyler Zimmerman.


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ONEIDA COUNTY - The Oneida County Highway Department spent most of the morning preparing for the winter weather parts of the state are expecting to see. 

Highway Commissioner Bruce Stefonek to get an update as to what the highway department has been doing to prepare. 

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MADISON - Several Wisconsin farmers organizations have joined a new coalition in support of the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Wisconsin Public Radio reports that the Wisconsin Potato and Vegetable Growers Association and the Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association have become part of the new Americans for Farmers and Families coalition.

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MADISON - Falling out of a tree stand can be a real risk for hunters.

Spinal injuries make up more than half the injuries suffered in falls from tree stands.

Wisconsin Public Radio reports that a review of the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics' trauma database for tree stand-related injuries from 1999 to 2013 shows 55 percent resulted in one or more spinal injuries.

The review looked at 117 patients who were hurt.

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RHINELANDER - Plenty of people set out to stock up on winter gear in preparation of the upcoming snowfall on Monday. Owner of Mel's Trading Post Mitch Mode says customers have been coming in to buy mittens, gloves, and hats to make sure they're prepared.

"Because when it's 40 degrees on Friday and Saturday you get kind of blasé about things and then you see a forecast which says six or eight or ten inches of snow on Monday, you get kind of serious again," said Mode.

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BLACKWELL - A violent sex offender will potentially be placed in the town of Blackwell in Forest County. Jeffrey LeVasseur was found guilty of first degree sexual assault of a child in 1995.

Residents are unhappy with the idea, but now the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest is also speaking out against the placement.

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