With the incidence of black lung disease among coal miners again on the rise, now is not the time to put benefits that help miners with the disease in jeopardy.

But if Congress doesn’t act by the end of the year, which is fast approaching, the extent of those benefits could drop sharply.

The issue has to do with the excise tax paid by coal companies that funds the Black Lung Disability Trust Fund. That fund provides benefits and a medical expense card to black lung sufferers and dependents when a coal company appeals the miner’s black lung benefits award or when the company goes bankrupt, thus freeing it from paying black lung benefits. …

Read the entire editorial at http://www.herald-dispatch.com/opinion/editorial-tax-to-aid-black-lung-sufferers-should-be-extended/article_99c775c4-f985-11e8-a847-7bde846dc776.html