Small Businesses Are OK With Health Care Mandates, Costs, According to SBA Administrator

Nov 26, 2012

Photo by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

On MSNBC’s Morning Joe last week, Small Business Administration chief Karen Mills claimed that she has not heard one case of the president’s health care law hurting small business: (fast forward to around the 4:15 mark) 

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"You know, I travel all around the country, every week I go to a different part of the country. I'm with small businesses. And I'm not hearing that," Mills said in response to a question about how she would explain employers cutting work hours for employees because of Obamacare regulations.

To which we say, really? We hear from lots of small business owners who warn that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is hurting their small businesses.

Here are just a few companies I’ve written about over the last few years:

But don’t just take our word for it. A recent story in The Wall Street Journal cites at least three companies that say they’re cutting employees' hours because of the law.

Pillar Hotels & Resorts this summer began to focus more on hiring part-time workers among its 5,500 employees, after the Supreme Court upheld the health-care overhaul, said Chief Executive Chris Russell. The company has 210 franchise hotels, under the Sheraton, Fairfield Inns, Hampton Inns and Holiday Inns brands.

CKE Restaurants Inc., parent of the Carl's Jr. and Hardee's burger chains, began two months ago to hire part-time workers to replace full-time employees who left, said Andy Puzder, CEO of the Carpinteria, Calif., company. CKE, which is owned by private-equity firm Apollo Management LP, offers limited-benefit plans to all restaurant employees, but the federal government won't allow those policies to be sold starting in 2014 because of low caps on payouts.

Home retailer Anna's Linens Inc. is considering cutting hours for some full-time employees to avoid the insurance mandate if the health-care law isn't repealed, said CEO Alan Gladstone.

Mr. Gladstone said the costs of providing coverage to all 1,100 sales associates who work at least 30 hours a week would be prohibitive, although he was weighing alternative options, such as raising prices.

Learn more about the impact of the health care law on your business and tell us your story in the comment section below. 


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