(Washington D.C.)- National Restaurant Association President and CEO Dawn Sweeney issued the following statement on the IRS’s final rules on employer reporting of health insurance coverage under the Affordable Care Act:
“We are disappointed in the IRS’s final rules on reporting requirements for employers and the lack of flexibility they provide to our members and our workforce. We asked the IRS to offer options for a truly streamlined reporting process, taking into consideration the employer requirements holistically, and instead are met with an overwhelming and extensive set of requirements. Our repeated requests to the IRS for prospective reporting, which would lessen the burden placed on employers and employees, have gone ignored. In addition, the ‘simplification’ provided undoes some of the flexibility provide in the Employer Mandate Final Rule on the Affordability Safe Harbors.
“These rules create a morass of confusion for restaurant operators that employ 50 or more ‘full time equivalent’ employees. Our industry has never needed to track such a massive outflow of employee data and the administrative and monetary burden of putting new systems in place within 10 months’ time continues to be of great concern for our members.
“Employers will face ongoing costs in order to obtain, maintain and protect their employees’ personal information. Many employers will need to add administrative personnel and new IT systems to track the necessary information and process employee notices. Employers will also need to obtain the data storage solutions needed to protect employee information from potential data breaches. These burdensome, confusing and costly requirements create a barrier to restaurant operators looking to grow their business and stifle their ability to create jobs across the country.
“As our members begin to navigate these complex rules, we will continue to educate restaurateurs through our health care toolkit and online resources. We ask Congress to examine these rules, and assist in providing more flexibility for businesses with variable workforces such as ours.”
Founded in 1919, the National Restaurant Association is the leading business association for the restaurant industry, which comprises more than 1 million restaurant and foodservice outlets and a workforce of 14.4 million employees. We represent the industry in Washington, D.C., and advocate on its behalf. We operate the industry's largest trade show (NRA Show May 21-24, 2016, in Chicago); leading food safety training and certification program (ServSafe); unique career-building high school program (the NRAEF's ProStart); as well as the Kids LiveWell program promoting healthful kids' menu options. For more information, visit Restaurant.org and find us on Twitter @WeRRestaurants, Facebook and YouTube.