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Washington Watch - July, 31 2014


Contradicting Court Rulings on ACA Subsidies

Last week, two federal appeals courts handed down conflicting rulings on the legality of premium assistance (tax subsidy) being provided by individuals/families participating in federally facilitated exchanges. The two courts, Washington, D.C. and Virginia, offered their contradicting rulings just hours apart, leading many to believe that the Supreme Court will have to sort out the issue during the court’s next session.

The issue: how the IRS interpreted the legislative intent of the Affordable Care Act, allowing for premium assistance to be provided to those participating in either state or federally facilitated exchanges.

The ACA provides tax credits (premium assistance) for those purchasing health insurance through an “exchange established by the state,” however since many states (36 in total) declined to establish state-based exchange marketplaces causing residences of those states to participate in the federally facilitated exchange marketplace. The IRS interpretation allowed for tax credits to be given to participants in both the individual and federally facilitated exchanges.

While the contradictory rulings have no immediate impact on the ability of individuals to access tax credits, it might require the Supreme Court to step-in and definitively rule on the challenge.


Cantwell (D-WA) Introduces Women’s Small Business Ownership Act of 2014

On Wednesday, July 30, 2014, Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) chair of the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee introduced, The Women’s Small Business Ownership Act of 2014. The bill focuses on supporting women-owned small businesses through: small business counseling, contracting, and access to capital.

The most exciting element of the bill is the expansion of micro-lending to women-owned small businesses, increasing the SBA Microloan capacity to $7 million, a $2 million increase, and focusing on loans under $50,000. The SBA stats show that 46% of microloans are given to women-owned business and average $11,569. The NASE enthusiastically supports this legislation.


Congress Adjourns For August Recess

Congress will be on recess July 31st through September 8th; unless there is “breaking news” Washington Watch will also take a short recess.


Washington Watch Online

Visit NASE Advocacy to view archived editions of Washington Watch. While you’re there, read the latest updates from the Washington, D.C. office, write your Congressperson, and find out how you can join the fight for micro-business.

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