Poll Finds State’s Small Businesses Unaware of Health Law Provisions
Fifty-seven percent of surveyed small businesses in California did not know that the federal health reform law provides tax credits to qualified employers to help offset the cost of offering health care coverage, according to a new survey, theÂ Los Angeles Times reports (Levey, Los Angeles Times, 3/20).
Under the health reform law, employers with fewer than 25 full-time workers and with average annual salary of less than $50,000 can qualify for a tax credit of up to 35% of their contribution to workers' health plans (Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, 3/21). Businesses with more employees and higher wages can qualify for smaller tax credits (Los Angeles Times, 3/20).
The survey was conducted by the investment company Pacific Community Ventures in conjunction with the Small Business Majority, a national not-for-profit small-business advocacy organization. The poll surveyed 804 California small-business owners with fewer than 20 employees between Feb. 11 and Feb. 25.
According to the survey:
- 52% of respondents that already provide insurance indicated they would be more likely to continue to offer coverage because of the tax credits (Central Valley Business Times, 3/21);
- 43% of respondents that do not provide insurance said they would be more likely to offer it because of the tax credits (Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, 3/21); and
- 34% of respondents said they feel positive about the health reform law.
The survey also found that 62% of respondents were unaware of the creation of state-based health insurance exchanges mandated by the health reform law (Los Angeles Times, 3/20).
In a release, John Arensmeyer -- founder and CEO of the Small Business Majority -- said the poll "confirms that when owners learn about the benefits for them in the law, they like what they hear and say it makes them more likely to offer insurance."
However, John Kabateck -- executive director of the California chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business -- said, "Most of our members aren't qualifying for the tax credits" (Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal, 3/21).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.