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Businesses say insurance delay creates uncertainty

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BATON ROUGE - A delayed requirement for some businesses to provide health insurance for all their employees may not affect Louisiana as much as other states, but it is creating confusion for some business owners.

Florist Billy Heroman Jr. in Baton Rouge already provides insurance for his 85 employees, and has for the past 59 years. This week, treasury officials announced they would delay a mandate for businesses like his to provide insurance for all their employees.

Heroman said it creates uncertainty, especially when it comes time to hire new workers. He said he's had to switch to part-time workers due to rising health insurance costs, especially after President Barak Obama's health care reforms started being put into place.

"Cutting back to hiring 30 hours, we've done that, we've had to do that and it's horrible. I hate having to do that, you know, but it's so uncertain, and you don't know what's coming, that for right now, you need to kind of stay there, until you can sort it all out," explained Heroman.

Treasury officials announced this week businesses with 50 to 99 employees would have two more years to meet those requirements. Renee Amar with the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry said more than 90 percent of businesses that size in Louisiana already provide insurance for their workers.


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