Michigan Business and Professional Association tells Congress: Make work week hours consistent in Affordable Care Act

Jan 28, 2014, 12:51 ET from Michigan Business and Professional Association

WARREN, Mich., Jan. 28, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Michigan Business and Professional Association (MBPA), in written testimony today during hearings before the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee, urged Congress to support proposed legislation which would redefine a full-time work week under the Affordable Care Act to the traditional 40 hours, versus 30 hours as prescribed in the current law.

MBPA testified in support of House bill HR 2575, the "Save American Workers Act," introduced in June 2013 by Rep. Todd Young (R-Indiana), which would redefine "full-time employment" in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) to be consistent with the established 40-hour week.

"An employer must now, per the health care act, classify a full-time employee as working 30 hours per week averaged over the course of a month. This historic change from the traditional 40 hour work week to the 30 hour week has given the business community no other choice than to restructure their workforce and reduce employees' hours to save them from closing their doors," said MBPA President and CEO Jennifer Kluge. Currently in the new health care law, businesses with 50 or more full-time equivalent employees are mandated to offer affordable health care coverage to all employees.

In introducing the bill, Rep. Young said that the definition of full-time employment in PPACA was set at a level that is incompatible with existing federal provisions that use the 40-hour standard. For instance, federal law has long dictated that time-and-a-half, or overtime, pay kicks in at 40 hours.

"If America and its businesses can revert back to the traditional 40-hour work week to define a full-time employee, it would do a great service to the already struggling businesses as they try to acclimate to the many other changes brought upon them by PPACA," Kluge said. "In Michigan, we are slowly recovering from a weak economy, and would like nothing better than to shift our focus to growing our businesses, and employing more workers."

MBPA said it will continue its support of the "Save American Workers Act" before Michigan Congressional Delegation members.

The Michigan Business and Professional Association boasts a statewide sphere of influence that no other organization of its kind can claim, leveraging a depth of programs and community initiatives that positively impact more than 150,000 businesses. Learn more at www.michbusiness.org.

CONTACT: Jennifer Kluge
Sue Voyles

SOURCE Michigan Business and Professional Association