The International Health, Racquet & Sportsclub Association is the fitness industry's only global trade association representing over 10,000 for profit health and fitness facilities and over 600 supplier companies in 75 countries.



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Entries in Johnny Isakson (1)


ILC Update: PHIT Act Introduced in Senate

Today, a noteworthy milestone on the journey towards the passage of PHIT occurred. PHIT – the bill that would allow individuals or families to pay for gym memberships, fitness equipment, exercise videos and youth sports league fees with dollars from pre-tax accounts, like flexible spending accounts (FSAs) and health savings accounts (HSAs) – was introduced in the Senate for the first time. The bill (S.2218) was introduced by U.S. Senators John Thune (R-S.D.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), and Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.).

Today’s introduction is an achievement. It is a product of the work of the PHIT Coalition – lead by IHRSA and SFIA and supported by many other organizations – many many hours spent in meetings with Senate staff looking for at least one Republican and at least one Democrat Senator who could put partisan differences and other political issues aside to say, "We care about the health of this country. We believe being more physically active is a part of the way towards a healthier America, and this bill that would provide financial incentives is a step in that direction."

This achievement is also a product of your support, your time and your money. Many IHRSA members - perhaps you - flew to Washington DC to meet with members of Congress and the Senate and asked them to sponsor or co-sponsor PHIT. Were you in DC in 2006 when Congressman Weller first introduced PHIT in the House? In other years, many more of you heard in Congressional meetings “we can’t support any legislation until it is scored.” So we pushed and pushed and we got the score for PHIT. In 2014, the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation finally issued the score for PHIT at $2.5 billion over 10 years. And today is another one of those milestones.

Your time and dollars keep the pressure on in Washington. Today’s introduction in the Senate is a result of that pressure. So, in addition to sharing this news with you, just as importantly, I want to remind you of all the work that you, the ILC and the Industry have done and enabled IHRSA to do and say thank you. We wouldn't be this far without you.



Helen A. Durkin
EVP Public Policy