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The US House of Representatives voted 248-179 yesterday in favor of legislation that "would rewrite the health care law to redefine a full-time job as 40 hours per week, reversing the 30 hours per week definition prescribed by the Affordable Care Act out of concern the current rules give employers an incentive to slash workers’ hours."

The MarketWatch story notes that the bill "would change the threshold for full-time work from 30 hours to 40 hours, which would exempt more businesses from the provisions of the Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate.  That mandate requires that employers with 50 or more full-time workers provide health insurance or pay fines, but Congressional Republicans fear it gives companies an incentive to trim weekly hours to 29 or fewer to avoid penalties."

Democrats, on the other hand, suggest that the issue has been overstated and say that businesses will not retool their approach to labor in order to keep more workers under 29 hours per week and thus avoid penalties.

While the passage of the bill by the GOP-controlled House was lauded by associations such as the Food Marketing Institute (FMI), National Grocers Association (NGA) and the US Chamber of Commerce, it is generally believed that there is no way that the Democratic-controlled US Senate will pass the bill. And, even if it did, President Barack Obama has said that he would veto the legislation … which means that the House vote was largely procedural and posturing, since there is no way it will become law.
KC's View:
In this case, I think the Democrats are not paying attention to what's going on out there. I've talked to plenty of businesspeople over the past year who say they are doing precisely what the Dems say won't happen - trimming employee hours to come in under the 29-hour line.

I'm also not sure why anyone would've suggested that 30 hours a week is a full-time job. Where do they think we are? France?