I spent the afternoon reviewing my company’s health insurance policy with some very capable administrators and the presentation was mostly about how the new health insurance law would impact our coverage and what we were allowed to offer, how it was offered, and the various penalties we would face if we decided not to cover, change coverage, or did not pay enough of the share of the coverage based on a percentage of the employee’s gross income. (Am I now to supposed to know my employee’s gross family income in order to avoid onerous penalties?)
I will spare you the technical details and get straight to the main point. This bill will kill employment, especially for the low wage employees and especially for mid size growing entrepreneurs (50 or more workers). All of the economists, trying to figure out why employment is lagging in spite of low interest rates and record government stimulus, should put the charts away and just read this bill. And I am not even addressing the various tax increases, cuts in Medicaid, and the bureaucratic increase in 1099 reporting. I am only addressing how this bill will affect employment.
It is also very clear that nothing in the bill will lower medical costs, but many requirements will increase costs. Access has taken a clear priority over cost and quality. We will provide more care for more people who will be ever less likely to be able to afford it without government help.
Employers with a large base of low wage employees will be hit the hardest, but their employees will suffer the most as many employers will find no other choice but to cut their hours to under 30 hours a week to avoid the burden on ‘full time’ workers. Any business start-up requiring low wage employees will be thoroughly discouraged by their accounting and legal advisers.
Investment firms, accounting and legal offices, and firms with mostly higher wage employees will suffer very little and will avoid most of the burdens of this bill.
This bill is an abomination. It will hurt the lowest income the most and will delay any serious recovery in employment until it is repealed.