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Small business owners from all over Muskingum County vented their frustrations about the new Affordable Healthcare Act, widely known as "Obamacare" during a public forum at Zane Petroleum. VP of the Ohio chapter of the National Federation of Independent Businesses Ron Geiger, said the healthcare tax that comes along with the ACA will hurt small businesses.
"It is a $8 billion tax next year and it'll grow to be a $100 billion tax and it'll be placed on small businesses," said Geiger. "If you're a large company and you get to self-insure, you'll get exempt from this tax. So this health insurance tax is going to be born by those small businesses who are already struggling to provide health insurance in the small group and individual marketplace.
Steve Gaswint was one of the many small business owners at Wednesday's forum. Gaswint is the owner of a mechanic shop that employs four people. He thinks there isn't enough information out there about the law and says he won't be able to offer medical insurance to his employees because of the high cost that he says, the ACA will bring.
"I can't possibly raise my rates or my prices high enough to cover the cost of that," said Gaswint, owner of Black Run Transmission. "On the other end of that, my employees will be affected because every time a cost is added to me, unfortunately it's either raise your prices or lower your wages, or don't give raises or don't give a bonus. That money always has to come from somewhere. It just doesn't come out of the air."
To learn more about the law and what it means for you, you can go online to www.healthcare.gov