In a hearing before the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship July 24, National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) Senior Research Fellow William J. Dennis, Jr. will testify about the impact of the law on the small-business community and the need for permanent fixes that will help restore confidence to America’s job creators:
“Relief is the initial reaction of affected small-business owners from the one-year delay in the employer mandate [announced two weeks ago]. The second reaction is a bit different. It is recognition that, despite the reprieve, nothing has fundamentally changed, both in terms of the law per se and the general lack of confidence, in part stemming from the ACA, that dampens economic growth. Small business continues to be in an economic holding pattern. Economic activity remains tepid. Plans to invest and hire remain low by historical standards (last 40 years). Nothing on the horizon portends an abrupt positive change, including the one-year delay. Moreover, the current postponement of the employer mandate exacerbates questions in light of prior delays, such as delay of competition within most SHOP exchanges, about the ability of this Administration or any Administration, to implement and administer ACA in any type of cost-effective and fair manner.
“Hopefully, the Congress will use the reprieve to recognize some of the problems it has created in the Affordable Care Act and make reasonable efforts to change them. You would not only help small business, but the people attempting to implement the Act. Needed changes to the law, specifically focused on small business include providing permanent fixes to the following parts of the law:
1. The definition of part-time employee - the 30/35 hour question,
2. Section 6055 and Section 6056 record-keeping rules,
3. Business aggregation rules,
4. The HIT tax, and
5. The employer mandate.
“While we may disagree on the severity of [the law’s] shortcomings and precisely what they are, I know of no one who argues that improvements [to the ACA] cannot be made. This hearing provides a good place to identify the needed improvements that directly impact small business.”