SAHU Supports Repeal of Small-Group Expansion
Sacramento, CA — The Sacramento Association of Health Underwriters (SAHU) applauds the House of Representatives and the Senate, as both chambers of Congress has now passed the Protecting Affordable Coverage for Employees (PACE) Act. The House of Representatives passed H.R. 1624 on September 28th through voice vote, and on October 1st, the Senate took action to pass S. 1099 through unanimous consent. This is a huge win for states and small groups.
The PACE Act repeals the mandated small-group expansion from groups of up to 50 employees to groups of up to 100 employees that was to go in to effect on January 1, 2016. The Act gives states the flexibility to determine the size of their small-group market instead of being forced into the national standard. SAHU has long been concerned that the combination of the new compliance requirements and the regulations for the new group size would cause dramatic changes to the insurance policies of medium-sized employers, and we have continued to advocate for the enactment of the PACE Act to prevent this type of market disruption.
“It just doesn’t make sense to on the one hand say these are Applicable Large Employers (ALE’s), subject to the Employer Shared Responsibility provisions of the ACA, while on the other hand moving them to small group status.”, says local insurance broker & SAHU member, Cerrina Jensen, “We’ve already seen dramatic upheaval in the existing small group market with eye popping rate increases hitting the market as we speak. Forcing these midsize employers into that fray would further exasperate the problem.”
“Ever since the ACA was passed, California has demonstrated time and again a leadership role of proactive proficiency,” states Marcy McCulloch, President of SAHU, “Our current market structure for Small, Midsize, and Large employers works well and recognizes that there are significant structural differences between a company with 15 employees and one with 85 employees, both of which would be constricted with a very wide brush into one market segment under current law. If President Obama signs this into law, we urge California lawmakers to take action quickly before businesses lose their current health plans and thousands of Californians lose their health coverage”
The Sacramento Association of Health Underwriters (SAHU) is a local chapter of the California Association (CAHU) and the National Association (NAHU). Our vision is that every American will have access to personalized solutions for health, financial and retirement security using the services of local insurance professionals. SAHU’s mission is to improve our members’ ability to meet the health, financial and retirement security needs of all Americans through education, advocacy and professional development.