SeaWorld Pushing to Change Obamacare Requirements for Employees

Categories: Economy

via Wikimedia Commons
Two of the biggest Florida-based companies -- SeaWorld and Publix -- are pushing for changes in the full-time worker standards for Obamacare.

Basically, with Obamacare, companies with 100 or more full-time employees must provide minimum essential coverage or pay a penalty of $2,000 to $3,000 per employee starting in 2015.

But the marine water park and grocery store chain want the 30-hours-a-week requirement to be changed to 40 hours a week, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

See also: Florida Is Becoming an Unlikely Obamacare Success Story

Other companies are in on the push as well, and the measure passed the U.S. House recently. But it faces an uphill battle when it reaches the Democrat-controlled Senate.

Moreover, President Obama is set on vetoing any measure that gets to him that will change his policy.

To avoid the expense of providing employers that are considered full-time at 30 hours a week, companies are looking for ways to cut those hours down to 28 or 29 to avoid the penalties.

Last year, SeaWorld began cutting part-time workers' hours from 32 to 28 hours a week to avoid penalties that will hit companies with 100 or more employees that do not insure their full-time workers. Companies have long complained that the policy will cost them millions.

See also: SeaWorld Attendance Falls; Major Investor Dumps Shares

However, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office reported that keeping with the 40 hours policy would mean 1 million fewer people being covered by their jobs. The Budget Office says that that would increase the budget deficit by $73,7 billion, according to the Sentinel.

SeaWorld sent an email to the Sentinel regarding its reporting, saying in part that "while we don't comment on our specific lobbying efforts, I can tell you that we support the attractions, tourism, restaurant and other business groups that are calling for adjustment to the definition of full-time employees."

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Ben Pogue
Ben Pogue

...i don't get it. This yr my taxes will go up$3000 in exchange for the worst health policy i have ever had, but if i go out and get full time employment with someone else they have to provide insurance for me? I thought i was responsible for myself and how are they going to transfer my tax commitment to the employer, or am i going to have to continue paying the extras $3,000 while the employer pays even more for the same joke of a policy? and why is this BETTER than the one payer system? ... Republicans treat me as if I'm too immoral, Democrats treat me as if i'm just to stupid to run my own life, how is this a choice?

James Kendall
James Kendall

If someone captured you, caged you in the equivalent of a 5'x5' cell, and then forced you do you humiliating tricks in front of cheering crowds for table scraps, you might just get a wee bit 'unstable' yourself.

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