Assemblymember Gonzalez endorses ballot initiatives to rein in healthcare costs

[Feb. 13, 2014] SACRAMENTOCalifornia Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) has become the 11th state legislator to endorse two ballot initiatives that would directly reduce prices and executive salaries in California hospitals.

The two initiatives are sponsored by members of SEIU-United Healthcare Workers West, the state’s largest union of hospital and other healthcare workers. Together they would reduce hospital charges by more than $3 billion a year. More information is available at

“One of our greatest challenges in achieving affordable, quality health care for all California families is cost containment,” said Gonzalez. “It’s heartening to see health care industry workers step up to reform some of the unnecessary excesses that have prevented the community from receiving the care that it deserves.”

The initiatives are:

  • Charitable Hospital Executive Compensation Act of 2014: Prohibits nonprofit hospital executives in California from receiving more than $450,000 in annual compensation – the same amount received by the President of the United States. Many top executives in the state’s non-profit hospitals make more than a million dollars a year.
  • Fair Healthcare Pricing Act of 2014: Prohibits hospitals from charging more than 25 percent above the actual cost of providing patient care. On average, California hospitals charge 320 percent more than the actual cost of providing care in their facilities.

According to the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development, California hospitals subject to this ballot initiative charged $233.8 billion in 2012 – even though their operating expenses were only $54.5 billion.

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Paid for by Yes for a Healthy California, sponsored and major funding by Service Employees International Union, United Health Care Workers West. Additional major funding by State Council of Service Employees Issues Committee.

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