Research

ObamaCare Is Planting The Seeds Of Uncertainty For The Farm Sector

ObamaCare Is Creating Uncertainty For California’s Agricultural Community. “Farm labor contractors across California, the nation’s biggest agricultural engine, are increasingly nervous about a provision of the Affordable Care Act that will require hundreds of thousands of field workers to be covered by health insurance.” (Sarah Varney, “Tacking Health Care Costs Onto California Farm Produce,” The New York Times, 8/21/13)

  • Agricultural Businesses, Which Operate On Small Profit Margins, “Are Already Preparing For The Potential Cost” Of ObamaCare. “While the requirement was recently delayed until 2015, the contractors, who provide farmers with armies of field workers, say they are already preparing for the potential cost the law will add to their business, which typically operates on a slender profit margin.” (Sarah Varney, “Tacking Health Care Costs Onto California Farm Produce,” The New York Times, 8/21/13)

To Be Successful, Employers Burdened By ObamaCare Are Laying Off Employees And Some Are Shifting Full-Time Workers To Part-Time. “Across the country, employers in many other kinds of businesses are devising strategies to comply with or, in some cases, sidestep a new requirement to provide insurance for those who work 30 hours or more. Some are breaking their businesses into smaller companies, for instance, or even laying off workers. Some companies plan to shift workers to part-time status.” (Sarah Varney, “Tacking Health Care Costs Onto California Farm Produce,” The New York Times, 8/21/13)

  • A Reuters Analysis Found That Businesses Are Cutting Back Worker Hours And Choosing Not To Expand Their Business Past 50 Employees. “Some businesses are holding their headcount below 50 and others are cutting back the work week to under 30 hours to avoid providing health insurance for employees, according to the staffing and payroll executives.” (Lucia Mutikani, “Analysis: ObamaCare, Tepid U.S. Growth Fuel Part-Time Hiring,” Reuters, 8/21/13)
     
  • Farm Contractor: ObamaCare Could Wipe Out Some Agricultural Companies. “‘I’ve been to at least a dozen seminars on the Affordable Care Act since February,’ said Chuck Herrin, owner of Sunrise Farm Labor, a contractor based here. ‘If you don’t take the right approach, you’re wiped out.’” (Sarah Varney, “Tacking Health Care Costs Onto California Farm Produce,” The New York Times, 8/21/13)

Agricultural Employers Will Be Forced To Pay Extra Costs Associated With ObamaCare, While Also Paying More Per Employee Under ObamaCare. “The effects of the law could be profound. Insurance brokers and health providers familiar with California’s $43.5 billion agricultural industry estimate that meeting the law’s minimum health plan requirement will cost about $1 per hour per employee worked in the field.” (Sarah Varney, “Tacking Health Care Costs Onto California Farm Produce,” The New York Times, 8/21/13)

  • Partner Of A California Farm: “That Cost Is Going To Be Borne By Us At The End Of The Day. “‘That cost is going to be borne by us at the end of the day,’ said Scott Deardorff, a partner at Oxnard-based Deardorff Family Farms, which grows strawberries, cauliflower and chard, among other salad bar staples, all of which are likely to be more expensive for consumers down the line.” (Sarah Varney, “Tacking Health Care Costs Onto California Farm Produce,” The New York Times , 8/21/13)
     
  • Insurance Broker: “Everybody Is Afraid Of The Cost.” “‘Everybody is afraid of the cost,’ said J. Edward McClements, Jr., a senior vice president at Barkley Insurance and Risk Management, based in Oxnard, about 60 miles west of Los Angeles. ‘It’s difficult when you’ve got 1,000 workers who’ve never had health insurance before, to get an idea of what their costs will be.’” (Sarah Varney, “Tacking Health Care Costs Onto California Farm Produce,” The New York Times, 8/21/13)

Growers Will Also Face Higher Health Care Costs. “The concern is felt from vineyards in Napa County to the almond orchards outside Coalinga in the Central Valley. Farm labor contractors generally rely on a 2 percent profit, and they say they will have to pass the added health care costs required by the law on to growers.” (Sarah Varney, “Tacking Health Care Costs Onto California Farm Produce,” The New York Times, 8/21/13)

  • They May Be Asked To Contribute 9.5 Percent Of Their Wages To Pay For Health Care. “Like many of the other workers in the tomato field, he was surprised to learn that his employer, Mr. Herrin at Sunrise Farm Labor, would have to offer him health coverage, and that he could be asked to contribute up to 9.5 percent of his wages to cover the costs.” (Sarah Varney, “Tacking Health Care Costs Onto California Farm Produce,” The New York Times, 8/21/13)
     
  • In California’s Growing Regions, The Cheapest Plan That Meets ObamaCare’s Mandates Will Cost Nearly $250 A Month With A $5,000 Medical Care Deductible. “The minimum compliant health plan for employee coverage under the new law will cost about $250 a month in California’s growing regions, according to insurance brokers, and includes a $5,000 deductible for medical care, although insurers cannot charge co-payments for preventive visits.” (Sarah Varney, “Tacking Health Care Costs Onto California Farm Produce,” The New York Times, 8/21/13)