Medicaid Expansion Letter from BONNEY Staffing CEO
Posted: Tue, Jun 11th, 2013 11:23:25 am
BONNEY Staffing’s CEO, Joel Gratwick, and Treasurer, Rebecca Gratwick, wrote the following letter on Maine’s Medicaid expansion, which was recently printed in the “Letters to the Editor” section of both the Portland Press Herald and the Bangor Daily News. Please learn more about BONNEY Staffing’s work to implement the Affordable Care Act (ACA) at Affordable Care Act (ACA) Compliance
Medicaid Expansion Plan Will Aid Businesses, Jobless
The May 24 Portland Press Herald editorial imploring Republican lawmakers to override Gov. LePage’s veto of L.D.1546 (“Our View: Legislators should override Medicaid veto”) should make all legislators sit up and take notice. If the bill comes to him again, they should ask themselves whether backing the governor on his future vetoes of the bill is good for Maine people.
We all, including our governor, need to accept that the Affordable Care Act is currently the law of the land. Many of us in the business community are already calculating how we will shoulder our share of the “shared responsibility,” especially if we want to put 48,600 unemployed Mainers back to work.
Under the ACA law, if an employer with 50 or more workers offers insurance coverage but cannot afford to offer an affordable and compliant product (an impossible task with low-wage, startup-type jobs), the employer will have to pay a $3,000 nondeductible penalty for each employee who then goes to the exchange for enhanced insurance and receives a federal subsidy.
However – and this is why the Medicaid issue concerns many employers – if those same employees are covered under the Medicaid expansion, their employers would be exempted completely from the employer’s responsibility.
Simply put, without passage of the Medicaid expansion bill, many Maine businesses will be shouldering more than their share of the “shared responsibility.”
It is very unfortunate for the Medicaid expansion issue to get caught up in partisan politics and ideological disputes, when the situation will have a financial effect on so many people in need and businesses struggling to hire thousands more workers.
One important way for a governor and legislators who champion improving the business climate in Maine is to move forward with expanding Medicaid to more people and averting stiff penalties on many employers.
Joel B. Gratwick, CSP
CEO, Bonney Staffing Center
Rebecca H. Gratwick, CPA, MST
Treasurer, Bonney Staffing Center