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DelBene Introduces Bill to Improve the ACA’s Small Business Tax Credit

Legislation would help more small businesses provide health insurance to their employees

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Washington, DC, February 5, 2015 | comments

Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01) introduced legislation today that expands tax credits for small businesses to make it more affordable to offer health insurance to their workers. Her bill is the companion to legislation introduced today by Senator Chris Coons from Delaware. Congressman Ron Kind (WI-03) and Congressman Frank Pallone (NJ-06) are also original cosponsors of the House bill.

The Small Business Tax Credit Accessibility Act (H.R. 762) is a fix to the Affordable Care Act that would improve, expand and simplify the small business tax credit created under the law. It makes the tax credit more accessible and available for a longer period of time, helping to ensure that more small businesses can provide affordable, quality health insurance to their workers.

“Growing our economy means supporting our small businesses, and one straightforward way to do this is to help business owners with the cost of health insurance for their workers,” DelBene said. “It’s clear that the small business tax credit created under the Affordable Care Act – while well-intentioned policy – can be improved to better serve the needs of small businesses.”

DelBene and Coons introduced the bill as House Republicans voted this week to repeal the Affordable Care Act – something they’ve done 56 times. The Congresswoman has urged lawmakers to come together on bipartisan solutions to improve the healthcare law, rather than scrapping it entirely.

“I am extremely disappointed that House Leaders forced another pointless vote to repeal the healthcare law this week, rather than taking up my commonsense fix,” DelBene said. “The Small Business Tax Credit Accessibility Act is about making sure that federal policy actually works in the real world, and I believe it represents responsible, meaningful reform to improve the Affordable Care Act.”

According to Small Business Majority, 70 percent of small business owners that don’t offer health insurance to their workers say it’s because they can’t afford to do so. DelBene’s legislation will help ensure more small businesses provide health coverage to their workers, while continuing to compete and grow in a still-fragile economy.

To improve the ACA’s small business tax credit, the bill would:

  • Raise the maximum size of businesses that are eligible to receive the credit from 25 to 50 employees;
  • Increase the number of years for which a small business may receive the tax credit to any three consecutive years;
  • Extend the credit to firms with higher average wages and tie the calculation of wages to the federal poverty level; and
  • Increase the threshold for a firm to receive the biggest possible credit from 10 to 20 full-time employees.

The legislation is supported by a wide array of national organizations, such as the Association for Enterprise Opportunity, the Association of Women’s Business Centers, Families USA, Main Street Alliance, the National Association of Health Underwriters, National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors, the National Grocers Association, the National Retail Federation, Small Business Majority, Third Way, U.S. Black Chambers, Inc., and Women Impacting Public Policy.

For more information on the bill, click HERE.

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