Bloomberg News

Payroll Tax-Cut Talks Hit Snag Ahead of Feb. 29 Deadline

February 15, 2012

Feb. 15 (Bloomberg) -- Lawmakers on the U.S. House-Senate panel aiming to resolve an impasse over extending a payroll tax cut encountered resistance to a deal tonight, Democratic and Republican aides said.

Two Republican aides said the dispute centers on concerns about requiring federal workers to pay more into their pensions to cover the cost of extending expanded unemployment benefits. A Democratic aide said the issue stems from Republican insistence on a provision that would allow some physician-owned hospitals to be paid through Medicare.

A short-term extension of the two-percentage-point cut in the payroll tax that funds Social Security is scheduled to expire on Feb. 29. Negotiators have been involved in talks over extending the tax break for the rest of 2012.

--Editors: Jodi Schneider, Jim Rubin.

To contact the reporters on this story: Steven Sloan in Washington at; Kathleen Hunter in Washington at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jodi Schneider at

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