Independent from Long Beach, California on February 27, 1969 · Page 13
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Independent from Long Beach, California · Page 13

Long Beach, California
Issue Date:
Thursday, February 27, 1969
Page 13
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A-I4-INDEPKNDENT (AM) PRESS-TELEGRAM (PM) L«M MMt . N*. », H CLAIMS MEDICS 'PAID OFF OFFICIALS WASHINGTON (UPI) -A House member charged Wednesday that state medical societies had paid "public officials" large fees to make speeches against Medicare legislation. An American Medical A s s o c i a t i o n (AMA) spokesman denied any AMA involvement. The charge was made by Rep. James A. Burke, D-Mass., during a House Ways and Means Committee hearing into tax-exempt organizations and abuses in the tax laws. Burke said he had reports thai speaking fees of between $500 and $1,000 had gone to some officials, some of whom made 25 or 30 appearances campaigning against Medicare legislation, which passed in 1965. He did not name any officials or specify what positions they held. Bernard D. Hirsh. director of AMA's law division, responded, "1 don't know of a single instance of the American Medical Asso- ciation doing this." Burke said it "seems unusual" that the medical organization of some 170,000 doctors did not know about the practice. Hirsh was appearing before the committee to ask Congress to overrule a recent Internal Revenue Service decision which could cut the income of nonprofit organizations. The IRS said profits from advertising in magazines published by tax-exempt organizations are subject lo income taxes. The committee, after listening to Hirsh, turned to several Treasury recommendations, from the Johnson administration for changes in allowable charitable tax deductions. Spokesmen for churches, colleges and fund-raising -- not the higher market value. groups asked the committee not to make any changes that would limit charitable contributions. The treasury proposed letting a taxpayer deduct up to 50 per cent of his taewn* for ehtrttlet. Th* limit allowed for most taxpayers now is 30 per cent. 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