Congressman Charles B. Rangel reiterated his support of the Affordable Care Act after a new report released by the Commonwealth Fund confirmed that the small businesses tax provisions in the healthcare reform law were helping small businesses.
"The Affordable Care Act is clearly helping small businesses despite Republican claims to the contrary," said Rangel, who introduced the Affordable Care Act that was signed by President Barack Obama in March 2010. "It makes no sense for Republicans to make repealing Obamacare their number one priority when Americans all over the country are benefiting from this historic law."
The Commonwealth Fund report estimated that twice as many small businesses have taken advantage of the small business tax provisions, known as the Small Business Exchanges (SHOP), in the Affordable Care Act in 2011 as they did in 2010. In 2011, about 360,000 small businesses, which cover around 2 million workers, claimed the tax credits. In addition, around 3.3 million employees of small firms received $321.1 million in rebates in 2011.
Small businesses can claim tax credits of up to 35 percent to cover them for their premium contributions if they have fewer than 25 employees and average wages of less than $50,000. These tax provisions allow small businesses to offer a selection of affordable health plans with reduced premium costs to their employees and starting in 2014, small business owners will be able to purchase insurance through health insurance exchanges. Workers who are not covered by their employees will be able to purchase coverage through the exchange. Many subsidies and tax credits will be offered to both the employers and individuals to offset the costs.
"These tax provisions allow small businesses to offer their employees more affordable and comprehensive health insurance than they can get today," Rangel continued. "It is important that we keep working to fully implement the Affordable Care Act."