Culver City Observer -

By Neil Rubenstein
Observer Columnist 

Affordable Care Act Needs Enrollment


January 11, 2018

I am sharing an email from Congresswoman the Honorable Karen Bass. The Trump Administration has cut funding for ads encouraging enrollment for the Affordable Care Act and pulled out of assisting states with enrollment plans. We must ensure efforts to promote enrollment succeed. Our health care system is only strong if all of us participate.

December 15th marked the end of open enrollment for many states, but please note that California’s health insurance open enrollment period runs until January 31, 2018. This means that you have until the end of next month to purchase a plan or renew your coverage through Covered California, our state’s health insurance marketplace.

Coverage could be more affordable than you think. That’s because financial help is available. During last year’s enrollment period, 8-in-10 people qualified for financial help for most people, that meant they could find insurance premiums between $50 and $100 per month.

For details about available plans, please visit or call (800) 300-1506.

Here are a few helpful links to get you started:

• Want to see if you qualify for financial assistance? You can find out here.

• Want to find free and confidential enrollment help? You can find that here.

• Are you ready to apply? You can start your application here.

Take the time to learn about your options and if you have any questions about this open enrollment period, please do not hesitate to contact my office.

Our friends at the Ballona Creek Renaissance (BCR) proudly lists their 2017 Highlights:

• Culver City’s enactment of the BCR-initiated single use polystyrene food ware ban.

• Student co-led Ballona Creek cleanups

• There first-ever Seed Awards for Pollution Control

• “A Ride” a new student-created short video.

• On going creek and watershed engagement with the Del Rey neighborhood

• Helping Culver City launch its Ballona Creek Strategic Planning Initiative (

Five Native American tribes that own an Oklahoma site where the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security intends to conduct bio-terrorism drills this year now oppose the governments plan saying the agency didn’t inform them about the chemicals or grounds the tribes consider sacred because more than 100 children are buried there. (L.A. News)

The most compelling find of 2017 was the discovery of the USS Indianapolis according to the editors of Archaeology. The heavy cruiser left San Francisco on July 16, 1945 with 1,196 crewmen aboard when it was torpedoed and sunk in 18,000 feet under the North Pacific. Only 316 survived, 18 of whom are still living.

For all music lovers; do I have good news for you. The Ray Charles Memorial Library recently reopened at 2107 West Washington Blvd on the site of the RM1 recording studios where Charles recorded many of his records. The dimly lit museum has seven galleries showcasing; never seem before phonographs and video footage. (Inglewood Wave)

It wasn’t that long abo that President Trump signed the VA Choice and Quality Employment Act which will pump $2 billion into medical care programs for thousand of Veterans. Costs will be paid for by trimming pensions for some Medicare-eligible veterans and collecting fees for housing loans. (L.A. Times)

Meanwhile in Wilmington, Delaware State Police have implemented a training program that will allow troopers to carry Naloxone antidote for opionid overdoses. (USA Today)

Newsweek wrote, the taxation of Social Security benefits generated $32.8 Billion for the program in 2016 or a bit more than 3 percent of total revenue. There are thirteen states that tax Social Security benefits to a varying degree. Senator Marco Rubio (R-Florida) says Republicans will cut Social Security and Medicare now that the tax plan past.

Theodorsia and I just finished our commentary for next week when I unconsciously opened one of our life cabinets. You know the one-because it has two Dachshund decals and clearly says 2003.

There must have been 30 or so files with so many items of interest I thought this might jar memories. From October 12,2003 some 14 years ago, a tee shirt “Ralphs Employees Locked out – please Respect our Picket Line”. I remember and perhaps you as well, the union struck Albertsons and here locally Vons and Ralphs joined the fray.

After a long strike and after the dust settled both Albertsons and Vons were severely financially wounded. As things evolved Joe Albertsons was taken over by Big Wall Street money. Today Albertsons is the second largest super market chain owing Vons, Pavilions, Safeway, Winn-Dixie, Food Lion and Buy Lo among others.

And if you are wondering how I got the tee shirt I walked their picket line and shopped at Trader Joes. I was there fourteen years ago.

In the British Parliament as everyone knows they have the House of Commons and the House of Lords. The Prime Minister is putting pressure to reduce the Lords by 200 members over the next decade. Presently there are 798-24 Bishops, 91 “hereditary” and 683 “life peers”. The lords don’t get a salary they do get $450 per day tax free and other benefits.

The Navy’s readiness has declined significantly in recent decades as the demand for naval operations increased, but the number of ships dwindled. A report done by the Navy examined factors it said that left the service ill prepared to meet key challenges. The report makes a series of recommendations from changes to personnel structure to enhancing training and more resources.

Guatemala says it is moving its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.

Ray Charles can easily see the lack of progress in Puerto Rico is a crying shame. How long do American have to wait for water and electricity?

For those who missed an article, all my commentaries can be found at; strolling down the page and underneath Opinion look for Rubenstein.


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