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Health | Politics
Video: Senate Indian Affairs Committee hearing


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The Senate Indian Affairs Committee held a hearing this morning to examine the federal tax treatment of health care benefits provided by tribes to their members.

Some tribes have developed universal-type health care systems. The Internal Revenue Service says such benefits are taxable unless they are based on factors like income level and need.

The committee heard from five witnesses, including an IRS official who said tribes have developed "innovative" health care systems. But Sarah Hall Ingram said federal tax code doesn't exempt tribal government health benefits provided to non-tribal employees.

The hearing lasted about 70 minutes.

Committee Hearing:
OVERSIGHT HEARING to examine the federal tax treatment of health care benefits provided by tribal governments to their citizens (September 17, 2009)

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Witness list for hearing on tribes and tax issue (9/16)
Indian Affairs Committee hearing on tax issue (9/14)