Tag Archives: Community College of Allegheny County

Americans in shock as businesses cut work hours and health benefits because of Obamacare

elections have consequencesDo you remember then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi calling on Americans to support the massive Obamacare bill that no Congress critter had actually read, saying that “we must pass it to find out what’s in it”?

Every day since the passage of that monstrous piece of legislation, we are finding out exactly “what’s in it.” Increasingly, more and more Americans have discovered that the Affordable Care Act is not just unaffordable, but is costing them dearly, as work hours are slashed to part time and spouses are slashed from their company’s healthcare coverage.

As examples, in October 2012, Orlando-based Darden Restaurants stopped offering full-time schedules to many hourly workers in some  Olive Gardens, Red Lobsters and LongHorn Steakhouses. The next month, Pennyslyvania’s Community College of Allegheny County slashed instructors’ hours to avoid Obamacare. In April 2013, citing Obamacare, Regal Entertainment Group, the biggest U.S. movie theater chain cut its employee hours; followed in July by an Indiana hospital chain, St. Vincent Health, firing 865 employees because of Obamacare.

Here are the latest:

Forever 21

1. Forever 21

Three days ago, a leaked memo from the clothing boutique chain Forever 21 revealed that beginning August 31, the company is reducing its employee hours to part time. In so doing, those employees will also lose medical, dental, vision and voluntary coverage.

William Bigelow reports for Breitbart.com that the company released a statement on Facebook claiming that “less than 1% of all U.S. store employees” would be affected. Although the company insists that the cuts are not due to Obamacare, it is being disingenuous because the company is cutting its employee hours to a maximum of 29.5 a week—a fraction less than the 30 hours a week designated by Obamacare as full-time employment. This allows Forever 21 to sidestep the law’s requirement for companies who employ 50 or more workers to provide health insurance coverage for full-time employees.

Strangely, instead of blaming Obamacare, some consumers are blaming Forever 21. As examples, see here, here, and here.

2. University of Virginia

Bob Schilling reports for BearingDrift.com that the University of Virginia (UoV) announced today that due to “rising health care costs,” starting January 1 next year, working spouses who have access to coverage through their own employer, will be ineligible for UoV insurance coverage.

The University blames Obamacare for an anticipated $7.3 million cost increase next year, which doesn’t include the millions more in Obamacare taxes that punish the university for its “generous” employee health care offerings.

3. UPS

Bizjournals.com reports that UPS or United Parcel Service Inc. plans to remove 15,000 spouses from its medical plan because they are eligible for coverage elsewhere. The Atlanta-based logistics company points to the Affordable Care Act or Obamacare, as a big reason for the decision, reports Kaiser Health News.

In a memo to employees, UPS says that rising medical costs, “combined with the costs associated with the Affordable Care Act, have made it increasingly difficult to continue providing the same level of health care benefits to our employees at an affordable cost.” As a result, 15,000 working spouses of UPS’s workers, who are eligible for coverage by their own employers, will be excluded from the UPS health plan in 2014.

4. Businesses in Charlottesville, VA

Paul Bedard reports for the Washington Examiner that Obamacare has forced many firms in Charlottesville, VA, to switch to part-time workers, according to an online memo to investors by David John Marotta and Megan Russell of Marotta Wealth Management, an influential money management team.

The memo says, “Economic self-defense has many firms forcing their employees to work less than 30 hours a week regardless of their preference or availability. This trend seems to be universal even here in Charlottesville.”

One manager was told he’d be fired if he hired a 50th full-time worker, the number that triggers the costly Obamacare system. Going over 50 means firms will either have to start offering health insurance or pay a significant fine.

5. Other U.S. companies

Charlottesville, VA is not alone. Dan Mangan reports for CNBC, Aug. 21, 2013, that a survey by Towers Watson of 420 American mid- and large-sized companies finds most are envisioning changes to their employees’ health insurance offerings so as to control employee-related health costs that are expected to increase under Obamacare.

Nearly 60% of the companies—which collectively employ 8.7 million people—are considering shifting the work of insuring their workers off from the company plan to private health insurance exchanges. The same companies also are increasingly unlikely to offer their employer-sponsored health plan for retirees older than age 65, off-loading them to Obamacare state insurance exchanges and Medicare.

See also:

~Eowyn

College slashes instructors’ hours to avoid Obamacare

What a surprise!

No matter the machination of Big Government, Americans have a mind of our own and will do what we need to preserve our self interest.

That is exactly what businesses across America are doing — slashing their employees’ hours and firing them altogether, in order to avoid the juggernaut called Obamacare that’s coming their way. As an example, last month Orlando-based Darden Restaurants stopped offering full-time schedules to many hourly workers in at least a few Olive Gardens, Red Lobsters and LongHorn Steakhouses.

The latest is a Pennsylvania community college that’s slashing its already low-paid instructors’ hours to avoid Obamacare.

Wynton Hall reports for Bretibart.com, Nov. 21, 2012:

Pennsylvania’s Community College of Allegheny County (CCAC) is slashing the hours of 400 adjunct instructors, support staff, and part-time instructors to dodge paying for Obamacare.

“It’s kind of a double whammy for us because we are facing a legal requirement [under the new law] to get health care and if the college is reducing our hours, we don’t have the money to pay for it,” said adjunct biology professor Adam Davis.

On Tuesday, CCAC employees were notified that Obamacare defines full-time employees as those working 30 hours or more per week and that on Dec. 31 temporary part-time employees will be cut back to 25 hours. The move will save an estimated $6 million.

“While it is of course the college’s preference to provide coverage to these positions, there simply are not funds available to do so,” said CCAC spokesperson David Hoovler. “Several years of cuts or largely flat funding from our government supporters have led to significant cost reductions by CCAC, leaving little room to trim the college’s budget further.”

The solution, says United Steelworkers representative Jeff Cech, is that adjunct professors should unionize in an attempt to thwart schools seeking similar cost-savings efforts from avoiding Obamacare. “They may be complying with the letter of the law, but the letter of law and the spirit of the law are two different things,” said Mr. Cech. “If they are doing it at CCAC, it can’t be long before they do it other places.”

Under the new CCAC policy, adjunct professors will only be allowed to teach 10 credit hours a semester. Adjuncts are paid $730 per credit hour.

“We all know we are expendable,” said Mr. Davis, “and there are plenty of people out there in this economy who would be willing to have our jobs.”

I can’t help but wonder how many of Community College of Allegheny County’s instructors, whose hours are now cut, had voted for Obama on Nov. 6?

~Eowyn