LC Bulletin: Small business reform impact

March 31, 2010. Retrieved online: April 1, 2010, from LC Bulletin report, Las Cruces Bulletin

Below are new details, listed in brief, of how the historic health care reform bill could potentially affect small business:

How many covered: 13 million small business employees

Cost: $938 billion over 10 years

Deficit reduction: Deficits will be reduced by $143 billion over 10 years, according to the Congressional Budget Office

Employer requirements: Employers can be fined if the government subsidizes their workers’ coverage. A $2,000-per-employee fee would be assessed. Companies with 50 or less workers are exempt.

Small business help: Business owners with 25 or less employees who offer medical coverage will benefit from tax credits. Credits start this year and rise in 2014 to a maximum of 50 percent reimbursement for the cost of premiums offered by businesses with 10 or less employees.

Migrant labor issues: A seasonal worker is defined as an employee who works 120 days or less. If workers are employed for more than 130 days, they are considered full-time employees and employers are subject to penalties if not covered.

Construction industry: A small provision slipped into the bill at the last minute changes the threshold for the construction industry. Now, any construction company with five or more workers would have to pay the $2,000 fine. Construction workers account for 1.5 of the 7 million jobs lost since December 2007.

Waiting period: There is a 90-day waiting period for companies to take on health insurance for employees.

Read the article.

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