HOUSE PASSES HEALTH CARE COST CONTAINMENT LEGISLATION
- Friday, June 15, 2012
On Tuesday, June 5 the Massachusetts House of Representatives passed its own version of a health care cost containment proposal (H4127), soon after the Senate finished work on its version of a health care cost containment proposal (S2270) approved May 17. Although each proposal differs slightly from one another, common ground was struck between the two bills with regards to an employer’s workforce and how it affects their Fair Share Contribution (FSC) assessment. A problem existed for many small and independent business owners who offer insurance to their employees, of which some may already have insurance from other sources, such as parents, spouses, veterans or retirement benefits. Businesses that offer insurance to these workers may be subject to the FSC penalty, because they don’t meet the threshold of enrolled employees in their health plan due to some of them having alternate coverage. Both House and Senate proposals remove these alternately covered employees from the formula used to determine if an employee enrolls enough of his employers in their plan to avoid the FSC assessment. The differences between these two proposals will now be worked out by a Conference Committee, however since this measure was in each of the House and Senate proposals, it must remain in some form in the final bill worked out by the Conference Committee. MFA testified in support of this measure with a coalition of other businesses that supported the effort. For a copy of the letter signed by the coalition please contact MFA.
Also, an attempt to apply the state’s sales tax to “soft drinks” was rejected during deliberations on the bill.
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