New rules from the U.S. Treasury Department have created another delay for federal healthcare legislation--the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The rules delay penalties for employers with 50-99 employees for an additional year--now until 2016.
Those businesses will not face any penalties until then if they are noncompliant with the ACA’s rules on minimum health insurance coverage for their employees.
In addition, employers with more than 100 employees also received some relief in that they will avoid penalties in 2015 as long as they offer affordable coverage to at least 70% of their full time employees, down from the pervious threshold of 95%.
In the Insurance Committee’s first public hearing of the 2014 session next week, the agenda features many of the same healthcare concepts from last year—including proposals for more health benefit mandates (procedures and services the state requires carriers to include in policies).
More mandates, however, will increase the cost of healthcare in Connecticut in two ways. First, mandates raise the cost of insurance premiums, and Connecticut already has one of the highest—and costliest—totals of mandates in the U.S.
Now, because of the ACA, any new mandates also will be a direct cost to the state. That’s because the list of subsidized mandates under the ACA was finalized in 2011 and can’t be re-opened until 2016.
Mandates are also costly in terms of perceptions of Connecticut’s business climate by national economic ranking organizations. Our huge number of mandates has already hurt our competitiveness and adding more will make a bad situation worse.
CBIA urges the Insurance Committee to reject any new mandates as too costly for Connecticut’s healthcare consumers and taxpayers.