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ACA’s Major Impact on America’s Smallest Businesses

Thursday, March 06, 2014
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT:  Kristofer Eisenla, LUNA+EISENLA media
kristofer@lunaeisenlamedia.com | 202-670-5747 (mobile)

Charlie Arnold, Small Business Owner on NASE’s Member Council, Urges Congress to Work Together to Ensure New Law Works for All Americans, Small Business Owners

WASHINGTON, D.C. – With just weeks until open enrollment closes for our nation’s new health care system, the U.S. House of Representative’s Committee on Small Business Subcommittee on Contracting and Workforce held a hearing today entitled, Obamacare and the Self-Employed: What About Us?During today’s hearing, Charlie Arnold, small business owner of Arnold Powerwash of Lewes, Del., testified on behalf of the National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE), the nation’s leading advocate and resource for the self-employed and micro-businesses. 

During his testimony, Arnold offered the perspective of our nation’s smallest businesses – the self-employed and micro-businesses.  His testimony centered around the ongoing confusion small business owners across the country continue to have in regards to healthcare enrollment, as well as the difficulties in interpreting new rules issued governing Health Savings Accounts (HRAs) and the disparity between “big business” and the small business community.

He testified: 

“The impact of the ACA on my business appears to be limited. I currently have only two full-time employees and several seasonal employees defined as ‘leased’ employees. Yet, I have found myself in a continued state of confusion to the status of my current health care coverage. As well as the additional confusion caused by the restrictive actions taken by both the Departments of Treasury and Health and Human Services toward the rules governing Health Savings Accounts (HRAs), and the continuing disparity faced by the self-employed versus ‘big business’, namely the two reprieves given by the Obama Administration to larger businesses in the last year that grants them freedom from complying with the new law. However, the self-employed are left having the March 31, 2014 enrollment deadline looming over our heads, while we are forced to confront the potential for possible penalties for not enrolling in Obamacare.”

“Now is the time to fix our nation’s new healthcare system for all Americans, especially the small business community,” said Katie Vlietstra, Vice President for Government Relations and Public Affairs for NASE. “We look forward to working with the current Administration and the U.S. Congress to make this critical law work for everyone.  There are concrete steps Congress can take today to ensure fair and equitable access to comprehensive and affordable health care.”

Arnold concluded:

“I would be remiss if I did not echo the calls by the NASE for parity between the ‘big business’ community and America’s smallest businesses. The self-employed and micro-business community, representing nearly 76 percent of the entire small business community, continues to struggle in meeting the ACA’s compliance requirements while our corporate counterparts continue to get a pass from the Administration. Specifically, the NASE is calling for a one-year delay in the individual mandate penalty for one calendar year….Additionally, due to the problems with the launch of the new health care system, we also urge the Administration and Congress to extend the open enrollment period until the end of 2014. This extension would allow adequate time for both individuals and small business owners to properly educate themselves about the best and most affordable health care plans available to meet their unique needs.”

**To speak with Katie Vlietstra and Charlie Arnold, please contact Kristofer Eisenla at kristofer@lunaeisenlamedia.com or 202-670-5747**

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The National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) is the nation's leading resource for the self-employed and micro-businesses, bringing a broad range of benefits to help entrepreneurs succeed and to drive the continued growth of this vital segment of the American economy. The NASE Small Business Locator helps identify and connect our nation’s smallest businesses. The NASE is a 501(c) (6) nonprofit organization and provides big-business advantages to hundreds of thousands of micro-businesses across the United States. For more information, visit the association's website at NASE.org

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