ASA senior counsel Ed Lenz testified yesterday on behalf of the Employers for Flexibility in Health Care (E-Flex) coalition at a hearing of the Health Subcommittee of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Energy and Commerce Committee. ASA is a founding member of E-Flex, and Lenz serves on its executive committee. His testimony at the “PPACA Pulse Check: Part 2” hearing focused on the unique compliance challenges under the Affordable Care Act faced by employers with large numbers of variable-hour employees.
While acknowledging the administration’s agreement to a “look-back” rule for determining the full-time status of variable hour employees for purposes of offering coverage, Lenz said that coverage eligibility “is only part of the equation.” Many other employer issues related to coverage, such as employee eligibility for tax subsidies and the employer reporting rules, remain unresolved, he said. Proposed reporting rules issued by the administration Sept. 5 fail to address those issues “holistically,” he added.
Lenz also asserted the coalition’s view that the 30 hours per week test for defining who is a “full-time” employee under the ACA does not reflect general employer practices and is creating perverse economic incentives to reduce employee hours. Lenz urged Congress to increase the hours required to be a full-time employee to more closely reflect employer practices.
You can read a copy of the full E-Flex statement at house.gov, and you can also watch a recording of the hearing.