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Retail Industry Leaders Association Files Amicus in California Health Care Litigation
Date:3/31/2008

ARLINGTON, Va., March 31 /PRNewswire/ -- The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) today filed a friend-of-the-court (amicus) brief in litigation under consideration in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit challenging the City of San Francisco's employer health plan mandate.

The case, Golden Gate Restaurant Association v. City and County of San Francisco, challenges the San Francisco's Health Care Security Ordinance, which mandates health insurance coverage by city employers.

"The ordinance enacted by the City of San Francisco violates both the word and the spirit of existing federal law," said RILA President Sandy Kennedy. "The healthcare challenges that San Francisco and our nation face cannot be improved with a patchwork approach that requires employers offering health care to play by different rules on a city-by-city or state-by-state basis."

Kennedy noted that as a result of litigation initiated by RILA in 2006, Federal Courts have invalidated similar laws enacted in Maryland and Suffolk County, New York finding that they violated the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), the federal law regulating employer-sponsored health plans.

The challenge to Maryland's law was later affirmed by the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. The District Court's decision in the Suffolk County litigation was never appealed.

"RILA's brief, which has been filed in conjunction with the United States Chamber of Commerce, encourages the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to follow the precedent established in the Fourth Circuit and apply those principles to invalidate the ordinance at issue in California," concluded Kennedy.

The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) promotes consumer choice and economic freedom through public policy and industry operational excellence. Its members include retailers, product manufacturers, and service suppliers--which together provide millions of jobs and operate more than 100,000 stores, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers domestically and abroad.


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SOURCE The Retail Industry Leaders Association
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