Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The ObamaTax vs City Hall

Regular readers know that one major effect of the train wreck has been reduced hours for part-time employees:

"[E]ven those fortunate enough to keep their current jobs (let alone obtain new employment) may be subject to reduced hours (and thus pay)"

Restaurants and movie theaters, theme parks and community colleges are all slashing employees' hours, if not their jobs. But the private sector isn't the only area feeling the pinch. As we noted last week, folks in Capital City "are so afraid that their health insurance premiums will skyrocket next year thanks to Obamacare that they are thinking about retiring early or just quitting."

What you may not know, though, is that you don't have to travel to DC to find the ripple effects of the ObamaTax:

"[L]ocal governments across the country have been ... cutting part-time hours specifically so they can skirt ObamaCare's costly employer mandate, while complaining about the law in some of the harshest terms anyone has uttered in public."

From California to Virginia, Texas to Michigan, local municipalities are coping with the drastic new regs in one of the few ways still available:

"We feel bad as a city administration and as a council in having to cut hours from 35 to 29," Medina [OH] Mayor Dennis Hanwell said. "We have the budget to pay the people, but we do not have the budget to pay for the health care." If they hadn't made that cut, the city faced up to $1 million in new health costs courtesy of ObamaCare."

For a city like Medina (just shy of 27,000 souls), that's a pretty hefty chunk of change. And when you start multiplying that by all the small towns across the fruited plain, you're talking serious coin. With U6 unemployment in the double digits, it's difficult for smaller cities to keep hitting their citizens with more and more taxes to cover public sector health insurance costs. Shrinking tax bases and increased insurance costs make for a powerful (and dangerous) combination, as we're seeing now.

Methinks it will only get worse.
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