Washington, D.C. – The president’s health care law is increasing costs and uncertainty forcing business to lay off workers and slow job creation, according to U.S. Senators Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., John Barrasso, R-Wyo., Rob Portman, R-Ohio, and John Thune, R-S.D., who introduced legislation to provide small businesses and their workers protection from some of the worst parts of the law.
The senators’ Small Business Fairness in Health Care Act would restore the definition of “full-time” work under the health care law to 40 hours a week and exempt more small businesses from the employer mandate.
“Because of the president’s health care law, workers across the country are seeing their hours cut, forcing them to work at least two jobs in order to make ends meet.” said Enzi. “This bill would not only help reverse that trend, it would encourage business to expand and create more jobs without fearing that huge fines will be levied against them unless they provide exactly what the president wants. It is aimed at fixing the worst parts of the health care law in order to bring real relief to the Americans who need it.”
“The President’s health care law remains unworkable, unpopular and unaffordable. And now we know that Obamacare’s crushing regulations are holding back businesses from hiring new workers. It’s also forcing Americans into part-time work which means smaller paychecks,” said Barrasso. “We should be making it easier for small businesses to expand, not harder. Our bill will eliminate Obamacare’s job-crushing policies that stifle economic growth and hurt American families.”
“Obamacare continues to burden Ohio families and small businesses,” said Portman. “It’s critical that we provide relief by repealing some of the most burdensome provisions. This legislation would ensure workers’ hours and pay are not reduced and exempt more small businesses from entering the costly healthcare exchanges that stand in the way of them expanding and hiring.”
“In addition to restoring the traditional definition of a full-time work week to 40 hours to protect workers from lost hours and wages, this legislation expands protections for small businesses from ObamaCare’s harmful provisions by defining a ‘small business concern’ under the Small Business Act,” said Thune. “Extending these protections will benefit small businesses and their employees.”
The senators’ legislation would provide greater clarity and flexibility for small businesses under health care law by repealing the 30 hours per week standard imposed by the health care law and replace it with a 40 hour per week standard for classifying “full-time equivalents.” The bill would also protect companies that have traditionally been counted as small businesses by expanding the scope of the exception in the employer mandate to account for any small business that is defined as a “small business concern” under the Small Business Act.