Skip to comments.City mulls stripping workers' health care (Commiecare™ strikes again - Washington, PA)
Posted on 11/08/2010 12:33:29 PM PST by Libloather
City mulls stripping workers' health care
By Linda Metz, Staff writer
11/2/2010 3:33 AM
Washington city employees eventually could find themselves shopping for their own health care plan.
At council's agenda meeting Monday morning, Councilman Joe Manning introduced the concept of the city not offering health care benefits to its employees by taking advantage of The Affordable Care Act that was passed by Congress and signed into law by President Barack Obama in March.
"If we, as an employer, do not provide health care, our employees would be eligible for federal government subsidies" to purchase their own, Manning said.
He also pointed out that under the new law, the city would have to pay a $2,000 fine per employee. But that option would be less expensive and less complicated than continuing to supply coverage.
"It's really an administrative nightmare," Manning explained.
Better known as ObamaCare, the law has been highly debated and is proving to be a key issue in today's general election, especially as more businesses have revealed that they are planning to drop health care coverage to their employees.
And while employers who ditch their health care plans will see an immediate benefit, they seemingly look toward more substantial savings in the future as health insurance costs continue to escalate.
The Obama Administration, however, claims that employers' savings by not offering health care will have to be offset by paying employees higher wages.
But critics contend that the $2,000 disincentive to employers to drop coverage will wane when more employers begin discontinuing health insurance. Critics say that will cause the competitive need to raise wages, meaning that increases won't be large enough to produce the Social Security revenue needed to support the law.
As a result, the elimination of health care to employees could be a big boon for employers, including municipal governments such as Washington.
"It's become the law of the land; we might as well take advantage of it," Manning said.
Mayor Sonny Spossey and other members of council agreed that it's something that should be investigated as should all measures that could cut costs for the financially strapped city that has been working diligently to avoid filing Act 47 status, which would allow the state to step in and impose a financial recovery plan.
In May, the city switched health care plans for its employees in anticipation of saving $217,132 annually. The city had been paying $814,352 yearly for health care coverage for its 85 employees. The change reduced the city's cost to $597,022.
Manning said the city currently pays about $12,000 a year per employee for health care. He went on to explain that his theory would be for the city to pay the $2,000 fine and then reimburse employees for unpaid costs not covered by the federal subsidy, which would be determined by their annual income.
Election day news dump.
It’s not that the new law id a POS it’s that Hussein didn’t do a good enough job selling it to the American people </sarc>
Drip, drip drip, as Obamacare putrifies over the next 2 years and more and more voters lose their healthcare, repeal will be a slamdunk in ‘13. Hell it could happen in ‘12 over Barry’s veto.
people are going to forced into ObamaCare.
That was the whole point
“Critics say that will cause the competitive need to raise wages, meaning that increases won’t be large enough to produce the Social Security revenue needed to support the law.”
Can anyone else understand that sentence?
Critics say that will cause the competitive need to raise wages, meaning that increases wont be large enough to produce the Social Security revenue needed to support the law.
Can anyone else understand that sentence?
Right. First of all, they don’t even care about keeping their current employees (very much) or would not contemplate withdrawing the benefit. Second, for every employee with a job, there are 2 or 3 who would be glad to take that job if given the chance. There is no way employers will “pay more” if not offering health insurance benefits, other than possibly some small token amount.
Remember that there were many big name companies that support this law precisely because it gives them a way out paying for health insurance while spreading the competitive disadvantage around equally.
$9592.38 an employee, gold plated.
That is the first I’ve heard of that!
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