Small Businesses Facing Big Challenges with New Health Care Law
We attended the recent WCBS Small Business Breakfast at Crest Hollow that explored the topic of the new health care law known as the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and came away impressed with the depth and specificity of concern business owners expressed over its implementation. The event, which was titled “Navigating the New Health Reform Law and Making Your Business More Valuable” (and which we helped sponsor), kicked off with a Q&A session with Joe Muldoon of the NY State of Health, the official New York State health plan marketplace, then segued to a panel moderated by Joe Connolly of WCBS and The Wall Street Journal.
Attendees were owners of small businesses on the Island and their questions indicated that much was still unknown about how, for instance, employers can offer health care coverage to employees across many different pay scales. Questions were raised about full-time, seasonal, and part-time employees; how their coverages differ; and what coverage requirements are mandated under the new law.
The take away was clear: Many business owners see the ACA as a burden and an impediment to growth. Whether true or not, it is their perception and we all know that often leads to reality. The ACA is in many ways a watershed event demanding changes in systems as well as behaviors. Therefore it is perhaps not too surprising that confusion and anxiety about its rollout are widespread. Education (along with some patience and open-mindedness) will be key. Many sources – from professional advisors to government web sites – exist to help demystify the ACA and business owners should avail themselves of this guidance without delay.
Business owners and individuals may benefit from the information to be found in the two links below.