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This an example of why we must sever the link between health insurance and employers. David Shepardson at the Detroit News writes: Northville-based wheel producer Hayes Lemmerz International Inc. wants permission to pay more than $10 million in bonuses, including as much as $6.7 million to its top five execs. Just Friday, however, Hayes proposed canceling its retiree health and life insurance coverage for households covering 2,200 families. That move could save the company $140 million. Hayes bankruptcy plan also assumes the government's insurer will pick up its underfunded pension plan. ... In the meantime, Hayes has proposed creating a Voluntary Employee Beneficiary Association, which would allow retirees who are ineligible for Medicare to keep coverage at a cost of $900 to $2,100 a month. Hayes would contribute as much as $4.8 million over four years to cancel its accrued liability of $147.5 million.
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