Wednesday, June 22, 2011

IAAPA Submits Comment Letter on Health Care Reform

Last week IAAPA submitted a letter to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service in response to the IRS's Request for Comments on Shared Responsibility for Employers Regarding Health Coverage. In the letter, which is available on the IAAPA website, we agree with the IRS's proposed look-back/stability period that employers can use to determine if an employee regularly meets the criteria frequently enough to be considered "full time" under the new health care law, and thus is eligible to enroll in the employer's health insurance plan.

As is the case in many seasonal industries, businesses in the attractions industry rely on seasonal employees who may work more than 30 hours per week, but only do so for a short period of the year. The attractions industry was disappointed that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act did not address seasonal employees under the Employer Responsibility provisions, leaving a lot of human resources professionals in the industry questioning how this law would impact their businesses.

The Request for Comments was the first time the government attempted to address seasonal workers and their treatment under the PPACA. Now that the comment period has closed, the IRS will consider the comments it received and move forward with a rulemaking process. We hope the IRS follows the Administrative Procedures Act and puts out a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), which will provide the industry with another opportunity to offer comments. We are watching for that notice, and will alert members when it is released.

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