NRF wants healthcare-reform law delayed

Retail lobbying group supports changes in full-time eligibility policy

WASHINGTON — A lobbying group representing retailers is hoping Congress will delay the full implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act next year.

In testimony before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, NRF VP and employee benefits policy counsel Neil Trautwein said retailers have "serious concerns" about the healthcare reform law, set to take effect next year. The group said it has "consistently" opposed the law.

"Our nation, particularly employers, cannot afford for the ACA to stumble out of the starting gate," Trautwein said in prepared testimony. "We fear that as time diminishes between now and January 2014, a cascade of additional last-minute regulations will create added confusion and thus could encourage more employers to back out of coverage."

The group said it would support delaying the law's implementation by up to a year and making full-time eligibility under the law applicable only to employees who work 40 hours per week or more. Currently, the law requires employers to provide affordable coverage to those working at least 30 hours a week.


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