NFIB's Austin: ACA Not Living Up to Promises to Small Businesses

Thursday, 08 May 2014 07:25 PM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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Obamacare was supposedly created to help small businesses, sole proprietors, and individuals, says Amanda Austin, the director of Federal Public Policy for the National Federation of Independent Business.

Instead, the law "has just created new taxes and new mandates" and the delays and exemptions prove "it's just flat-out not working," Austin told hosts J.D. Hayworth and Morgan Thompson on Newsmax TV's "American Forum" Thursday.

A new study that finds the health insurance tax will cost more than 280,000 jobs in upcoming years will not only cost businesses, but it will also create problems for consumers, said Austin.

"Most consumers are going to see their premiums increase when we're talking about healthcare costs," said Austin. "This law puts in new mandates on individuals and businesses. It requires more health benefits included in the insurance claim that you purchase, and the way it's sort of 'pays for itself' is it's got a handful of new taxes that basically most ... consumers are going to be paying in the long run. They're demanding that you get the Cadillac when you just wanted the Corolla."

The implementation of Obamacare will create additional costs for everything "from the bottom up," said Austin.

"You've got a huge tax on employers through the employer mandate. If you do not offer insurance to your employees and are considered large by what constitutes this law which is 50 or more employees, you're paying either $2,000 dollars or $3,000 dollars not deductible to the employer per head on an annual basis per employee."

The list goes on, said Austin, as there are new Medicare taxes included, a medical device tax, and a health insurance tax.

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All businesses are going to be hit hard, said Austin, but small businesses will likely be hit the most.

"You're looking at the mom and pop, 15 employees, 20 employees, 25, if you ask them what the most unpredictable cost they have on an annual basis, I guarantee you those that are offering health insurance coverage are going to say, it's my healthcare premium."

Such businesses, she said, don't know what the impact of health insurance is going to be, said Austin.

"With this law, it just completely exacerbates that issue and that's why we're so sensitive to every nook and in this law that affects business," said Austin. "At the end of the day it comes out of one bucket and it's going to be an enormous cost."

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