“But the company now faces a new problem because of the Obama health law. Automation Systems Inc. has expanded to include 37 employees today, and Schanstra says he wants to hire more — maybe as many as 200 or 300 in the next 10 to 15 years. But once the business crosses the 50-employee threshold, it will have to pay $40,000 in penalties, plus $2,000 for each additional employee. That’s because of the so-called employer mandate, a fee imposed on businesses that get too big without providing health care the federal government deems acceptable.”

“Many businesses plan to bring on more part-time workers next year, trim the hours of full-time employees or curtail hiring because of the new health care law, human resource firms say. Their actions could further dampen job growth, which already is threatened by possible federal budget cutbacks resulting from the tax increases and spending cuts known as the fiscal cliff.”

“But for the 34-year-old, the expected growth in sales brings a new concern. He is worried that as Automation Systems continues to expand, it will be subject to a provision in the health-care overhaul that could damage its bottom line. Mr. Schanstra is contemplating various strategies he can take next year in order to sidestep what he believes are significant burdens of complying with the law. In fact, he’s considering whether he should split his manufacturing firm in two.

“Obamacare has been the dog that didn’t bark in this campaign. Given some of the damaging ideas in the law, that’s a surprise. Among the worst is medical device tax, which kicks in next year. The reticence to fight about the tax is odd: It already is destroying job opportunities, and it soon will start blocking medical developments that could improve or even save many lives.”

“Some low-wage employers are moving toward hiring part-time workers instead of full-time ones to mitigate the health-care overhaul’s requirement that large companies provide health insurance for full-time workers or pay a fee. Several restaurants, hotels and retailers have started or are preparing to limit schedules of hourly workers to below 30 hours a week.”

“The most important provisions of ObamaCare are scheduled to take effect in 2014. I have been researching ObamaCare and assisting with its implementation, and have come to this realization: Without further reforms, the law will create unnecessary costs for working-class Americans.”

“Yes, we are facing a fiscal cliff, but we are also facing an entitlements cliff and, thanks to ObamaCare, a health care cliff. Those three cliffs aren’t separate; they’re intertwined. Go over one and we will be pulled over the other two.”

“In the time of Caesar, all roads led to Rome. In the time of ObamaCare, seemingly every path heads straight for a cliff.
The health law is filled with cliffs where the returns for more work take a nose-dive.”

“Nearly half of the people ObamaCare is supposed to cover will be enrolled in the Medicaid program. Past research by Obama health advisors, Jon Gruber and David Cutler, have found that half to three-quarters of newly enrolled, Medicaid enrollees were previously insured with private coverage — often this is because employers dropped the employee health plan knowing Medicaid would pick up the slack. Studies have found Medicaid coverage is inferior to private coverage.”

“Recently, Sears and Darden Restaurants (the parent company of Red Lobster and Olive Garden) revealed plans to change how they provide benefits to their workers. Instead of selecting a plan for the workers, the two companies will give them cash directly to purchase insurance from an online marketplace. Creating private insurance exchanges is a simple but potentially game-changing approach to health insurance coverage.”