Cumberland Times-News


February 17, 2014

This is just another tax burden that will hurt small businesses

The new Health Insurance Tax that went into effect this year will hike insurance premiums for small business owners and the self-employed.

At a cost of $500 per policyholder per year, it’s absolutely ridiculous.

The health insurance companies are not going to absorb the tax passed by the federal government when the Affordable Care Act was signed into law.

It’s very unfair for small businesses to shoulder a large part of paying for insurance for those that don’t work.

It has been a serious struggle to keep up with rising costs lately. With a towing and used auto parts business, the increased costs for buying and selling our cars and parts is ridiculous.

There are several new buyers’ fees on top of what we are already paying for the cars, sales taxes, and other fees that are going directly to the government.

With most employees making minimum wage, any extra costs that have to be passed onto them will hurt them, too.

As a small business owner since 1986, I know the importance of my company to this community. We provide 24-hour towing services and a salvage yard. With multiple phone lines to man, one salvage yard, and two towing lots, we employ 12 local people.

We also provide health benefits to our long-term employees, but this tax will hurt our ability to do so. We already pay enough taxes and have been just able to support ourselves.

Small businesses are the backbone of the American economy, so other small businesses in my area work to help each other out.

Personally, I try to be active in the community by helping to take care of our business and as a notary public. I also have a second job doing sewage easements for the area.

I like to think that I am part of the community, especially since our business supports the local schools and sports clubs.

The one glimmer of hope on the horizon is S. 603, the Jobs and Premium Protection Act. It was introduced by legislators who realized the harm the health insurance tax would do.

Raising health insurance premiums for the small business sector will do nothing to help the economy, as everyone from business owners to consumers will feel the effects. I hope more West Virginians will join me in asking legislators to vote for this bill and repeal this unnecessary and harmful tax.

Maranda Peer

Peer’s Used Auto Parts Inc.

Ridgeley, W.Va.

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