Religion, Politics and World Events They make great dinner conversation, don't you think? plus Political Film

A bit more Frisco insanity

Old 11-23-05, 09:14 PM
  #1  
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
Thread Starter
 
BKenn01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Big Blue Nation!
Posts: 4,497
A bit more Frisco insanity

S.F. plan to insure health of workers
Most businesses would have to pay
- Charlie Goodyear, Chronicle Staff Writer
Wednesday, November 23, 2005


City legislation introduced Tuesday would require San Francisco businesses with 20 or more workers to pay for health care insurance, a move critics called illegal and unworkable.

The ordinance, submitted by Supervisor Tom Ammiano, would force businesses not offering medical coverage to their workers to set up health savings accounts and pay $345 a month per employee into them. Businesses would use the savings to buy health insurance for their workforce.

The $345 is what it costs the city government per month to cover each of its workers.

Under the legislation, a task force would be created to examine whether companies that say they can't afford the $345 a month should be allowed to pay a lower, unspecified fee directly to the city -- and the city would provide coverage or direct medical care.

Companies also would have the option of reimbursing their employees directly for the cost of health care, according to the legislation.

"We have 40,000 people who are working hard every day and do not have health care," Ammiano said at a City Hall press conference before introducing the legislation at the Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday. "I do not want people to choose between their rent and health care."

He called the measure, which is backed by the San Francisco Labor Council, the Senior Action Network and other community groups, "an enlightened and overdue piece of legislation." But it drew swift reaction from groups that opposed similar state legislation last year.

"Supervisor Ammiano calls his coverage 'universal,' but the only thing universal about the Worker Health Care Security Act is the universal damage it will do to San Francisco's economy," said Mike Flynn, director of legislative affairs for the Employment Policies Institute in Washington, D.C.

"Expanding insurance coverage is a laudable goal," Flynn added, "but you can't wave a wand and do it by legislative command. His proposal would slap San Francisco's businesses with staggering costs and lead to tremendous job loss among the city's least-skilled workers."

Nathan Nayman, the director of San Francisco's Committee on Jobs, a lobbying group for downtown business interests, echoed the point. "This is going to have a negative consequence on business in the city. There's just no doubt about it," Nayman said.

The legislation is the latest in a long line of similar attempts at the local, state and federal levels. Efforts to offer health care to all San Francisco residents stalled in the late 1990s. Last year, a slim majority of California voters turned aside Proposition 72, which would have required medium and large businesses to pay 80 percent of employees' health-care costs.

In San Francisco, however, Prop. 72 won overwhelming support, nearly 70 percent of voters backing the measure.

Ammiano would need six votes on the 11-member Board of Supervisors to pass the measure. He was joined Tuesday by Supervisors Ross Mirkarimi, Chris Daly and Sophie Maxwell.

Daly said the city pays as much as $25 million annually for medical services for the uninsured. "We can't keep continuing with the money that we're spending without the private sector making good on a social contract," he said.

Eight votes would be needed to withstand a mayoral veto -- and Mayor Gavin Newsom indicated he would need to be persuaded to support Ammiano's legislation.

On Tuesday, Newsom said he hadn't seen the details of the proposed ordinance but voiced concern that it could "have a serious impact on San Francisco's (economic) recovery and our ability to compete.''

Newsom said he agrees with Ammiano that the lack of adequate health care is a serious problem, but he wasn't ready to endorse the supervisor's solution.

"I think it's noble,'' he said, "except we have to be considerate that we're not an island and that the impact this could have on small mom-and-pops -- business that we're trying to promote and expand and help grow and steward -- could be significant, so we have to be cautious.''

Newsom, who supported Prop. 72, said a statewide approach would be more prudent. "Citywide, we have to be a little more cautious.''

Small business advocates said legislation like Ammiano's, though well-intentioned, is ultimately misguided and doesn't address the real problem of skyrocketing health-care costs.

Scott Hauge, president of Small Business California, runs an insurance brokerage with 33 employees. He offers health care for his workers and has seen his annual bill rise from $80,000 to nearly $149,000 in just a few years.

"We did meet with Tom and talk in general terms about the proposal," Hauge said Tuesday. "The big concern is what are the cost controls associated with health care? There's no end in sight. If nobody provides cost controls, it will go up double digits every year. You have businesses that operate closer to the margin that just don't have the wherewithal to pay."

Jot Condie of the California Restaurant Association, called the notion of making small business pay for health-care costs ridiculous.

"What Supervisor Ammiano is suggesting here is definitely the wrong solution," Condie said. "Employer-mandated health care is a flawed vehicle to insure everybody."

Condie said restaurants and other small businesses typically operate at small profit margins. If Ammiano's legislation passes, it would likely drive them out of town, he said. "The fact that it's a city proposal, the notion of flight from San Francisco and its tax base really is a relevant point."

Ammiano doesn't buy the argument. "As to businesses moving, I haven't seen them move," he said. "They're not going to move."

Businesses that offer health care for their workers have higher productivity, he said, and do better in the marketplace.

Hearings on the legislation aren't expected to be scheduled until early next year.

If passed, the measure also almost certainly would face a court challenge. Opponents said it runs afoul of federal regulations governing how companies provide heath care to their workers.

"There is definitely a school of thought that suggests this is a flat-out violation of federal laws," Condie said. "If this passes, I imagine there is probably standing to go to court."



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Response and reaction
What the legislation's backers say:


"We have 40,000 people who are working hard every day and do not have health care. I do not want people to choose between their rent and health care."

- S.F. Supervisor Tom Ammiano

What opponents say:

"The big concern is what are the cost controls associated with health care? There's no end in sight. If nobody provides cost controls, it will go up double digits every year. You have businesses that operate closer to the margins that just don't have the wherewithal to pay."

- Scott Hauge, president of Small Business California and an insurance broker

What the mayor says

"I think it's noble ... except we have to be considerate that we're not an island and that the impact this could have on small mom-and-pops -- business that we're trying to promote and expand and help grow and steward -- could be significant, so we have to be cautious."

- S.F. Mayor Gavin Newsom
Ah come on now, that mom and pop with 20 employees can easily fork over a measily million bucks a year. We has ta take care of the people from the cradle to the grave!
BKenn01 is offline  
Old 11-23-05, 09:36 PM
  #2  
X
Administrator
 
X's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 1987
Location: AA-
Posts: 10,675
Don't call it Frisco!
X is offline  
Old 11-23-05, 10:24 PM
  #3  
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
Thread Starter
 
BKenn01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Big Blue Nation!
Posts: 4,497
Don't call it Frisco!
Is there a particular reason why?
BKenn01 is offline  
Old 11-23-05, 10:39 PM
  #4  
X
Administrator
 
X's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 1987
Location: AA-
Posts: 10,675
Originally Posted by BKenn01
Is there a particular reason why?
Because that's what everyone in San Francisco says.

Only non-SF people call it Frisco.
X is offline  
Old 11-23-05, 11:14 PM
  #5  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Land of the Lobstrosities
Posts: 10,300
Originally Posted by BKenn01
Ah come on now, that mom and pop with 20 employees can easily fork over a measily million bucks a year. We has ta take care of the people from the cradle to the grave!
Actually it would be closer to 80K/year for 20 employees. I assume it doesn't cover part time works, because if it does it is DOA.
wmansir is offline  
Old 11-24-05, 12:13 AM
  #6  
Banned
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Democratik People's Republik of Kalifornia
Posts: 22,995
Ammiano is an idiot. He's trying to follow Daly's footsteps since the handgun proposition passed easily. Daly can score some ludricous points, so can I.
Myster X is offline  
Old 11-24-05, 12:16 AM
  #7  
DVD Talk Ruler
 
General Zod's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2001
Location: Santa Clarita, CA
Posts: 21,140
Liberals gone wild!

I can't wait for the video.
General Zod is offline  
Old 11-24-05, 12:16 AM
  #8  
X
Administrator
 
X's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 1987
Location: AA-
Posts: 10,675
"We have 40,000 people who are working hard every day and do not have health care," Ammiano said at a City Hall press conference before introducing the legislation at the Board of Supervisors meeting Tuesday.
I think he would hard pressed to find 40,000 people in total, whether or not they have health insurance, who work hard every day in San Francisco.
X is offline  
Old 11-24-05, 01:38 AM
  #9  
DVD Talk Hero
 
JasonF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 39,062
Originally Posted by wmansir
Actually it would be closer to 80K/year for 20 employees. I assume it doesn't cover part time works, because if it does it is DOA.
No!!!! It's a million zillion dollars and all the businesses will go out of business or move to Oakland!!!

Some on the right don't want the government to provide health care. They don't want to require businesses to provide health care. I suppose they think people can pay for health care out of pocket. Those of us in the reality-based community know otherwise.
JasonF is online now  
Old 11-24-05, 01:48 AM
  #10  
DVD Talk God
 
kvrdave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Pacific NW
Posts: 86,200
Originally Posted by JasonF
No!!!! It's a million zillion dollars and all the businesses will go out of business or move to Oakland!!!

Some on the right don't want the government to provide health care. They don't want to require businesses to provide health care. I suppose they think people can pay for health care out of pocket. Those of us in the reality-based community know otherwise.

Agreed. Those business should also have to pay for housing. That is actually more essential than health care most of the time. Sure, those rabid conservatives will say that people can pay for rent and/or health insurance out of their pay check, but what kind of crap is that?

I suspect many businesses will find a way to stay around 19 employees, or simply will decrease raises, bonuses, etc. It won't just show up out of nowhere. Maybe wages will start lower.

Actually, I wouldn't mind seeing it happen since it doesn't affect me.

Which is more important? Housing or health insurance?
kvrdave is offline  
Old 11-24-05, 07:34 AM
  #11  
bhk
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Right of Atilla The Hun
Posts: 19,749
The should require business to buy all of their employees cars. How are people going to get to work to get the health insurance benefit?
bhk is offline  
Old 11-24-05, 07:35 AM
  #12  
bhk
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Right of Atilla The Hun
Posts: 19,749
Those of us in the reality-based community know otherwise.

You want the same people that run the DMV to run our healthcare system. And you say you're reality based?
bhk is offline  
Old 11-24-05, 08:06 AM
  #13  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Lower Gum Curve
Posts: 18,879
Originally Posted by X
Because that's what everyone in San Francisco says.

Only non-SF people call it Frisco.
So what do SF people call it? San?
Jason is offline  
Old 11-24-05, 08:29 AM
  #14  
DVD Talk God
 
Join Date: Jun 1999
Posts: 68,522
Originally Posted by JasonF
Some on the right don't want the government to provide health care. They don't want to require businesses to provide health care. I suppose they think people can pay for health care out of pocket. Those of us in the reality-based community know otherwise.
No should argue the fact right-wingers don't live in reality when it comes to health care - or any social issue for that matter.

Remember the member who posted that you can buy good health insurance for $50.00 per month?
classicman2 is offline  
Old 11-24-05, 08:59 AM
  #15  
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
Thread Starter
 
BKenn01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Big Blue Nation!
Posts: 4,497
Actually it would be closer to 80K/year for 20 employees. I assume it doesn't cover part time works, because if it does it is DOA.
Actually we are both wrong, but you where a lot closer than I was. It adds up to 90k per year for 20 employees. To a small biz though it may as well be a million. 90k would be the yearly profit for some.

Some on the right don't want the government to provide health care.
Yep!

They don't want to require businesses to provide health care.
Right again!


I want nothing to do with health care from a government that has never proven it can do much of anything right.
BKenn01 is offline  
Old 11-24-05, 09:02 AM
  #16  
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
Thread Starter
 
BKenn01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Big Blue Nation!
Posts: 4,497
No should argue the fact right-wingers don't live in reality when it comes to health care - or any social issue for that matter.
No, we dont believe the gov. can solve it - or any social issue for that matter.
BKenn01 is offline  
Old 11-24-05, 01:55 PM
  #17  
DVD Talk Hero
 
JasonF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 39,062
Originally Posted by bhk

You want the same people that run the DMV to run our healthcare system. And you say you're reality based?
You seem to have no problem putting these people in charge of nuclear missiles or deciding whether or not to torture particular individuals. Somehow, I think we can trust them with the responsibility to run a healthcare system.

Do you know how the administrative costs of Medicare compare to the administrative costs of private health insurance?
JasonF is online now  
Old 11-24-05, 01:56 PM
  #18  
DVD Talk Hero
 
JasonF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 39,062
Originally Posted by kvrdave
Agreed. Those business should also have to pay for housing. That is actually more essential than health care most of the time. Sure, those rabid conservatives will say that people can pay for rent and/or health insurance out of their pay check, but what kind of crap is that?
I must have missed the news reports on the national crisis wheren tens of millions of Americans have no place to live.
JasonF is online now  
Old 11-24-05, 02:06 PM
  #19  
DVD Talk Hero
 
JasonF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 39,062
Originally Posted by BKenn01
Actually we are both wrong, but you where a lot closer than I was. It adds up to 90k per year for 20 employees. To a small biz though it may as well be a million. 90k would be the yearly profit for some.
$345 per month * 12 months * 20 employees= $82,800. Given your initial estimate of 1 million dollars, I think wmansir's "closer to 80k" was pretty damned accurate. And since that would qualify as a business expense, assuming an effective 25% tax rate (the tax rate for businesses earning between $50,000 and $75,000 profit, so it's probably understating the rate), it's actually a cost to the business of $62,100.

Is $62,100 a lot of money for a business with 20 employees? Depends on the business, I suppose.
JasonF is online now  
Old 11-24-05, 09:20 PM
  #20  
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
Thread Starter
 
BKenn01's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Big Blue Nation!
Posts: 4,497
$345 per month * 12 months * 20 employees= $82,800. Given your initial estimate of 1 million dollars, I think wmansir's "closer to 80k" was pretty damned accurate. And since that would qualify as a business expense, assuming an effective 25% tax rate (the tax rate for businesses earning between $50,000 and $75,000 profit, so it's probably understating the rate), it's actually a cost to the business of $62,100.

Is $62,100 a lot of money for a business with 20 employees? Depends on the business, I suppose.
Ok, I screwed the math all up.

The problem with whatever the figure is that it is a mandate that is going to grow at double digit inflation. Health Care is growing between 10 to 15% per year. Companies that provide it now are trying to figure a way to cut costs because of this.

Any madate to cover workers 100% is going to bankrupt a lot of biz. General Motors finally got retirees to cover some of their heath care costs. $700 per month saved GM 1 billion. It is to expensive to mandate that huge of an expense.
BKenn01 is offline  
Old 11-24-05, 10:34 PM
  #21  
DVD Talk God
 
kvrdave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Pacific NW
Posts: 86,200
Originally Posted by JasonF
I must have missed the news reports on the national crisis wheren tens of millions of Americans have no place to live.
It shows up every time a Republican is president.

And, that appears to be more important for people to spend their money on that health care. Does that mean it is any less important? If we required employers to pay for housing, people would have more money to spend on health care, wouldn't they?
kvrdave is offline  
Old 11-25-05, 12:04 AM
  #22  
Banned
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Democratik People's Republik of Kalifornia
Posts: 22,995
This was all over the radio last night. Some local business owner called in and said if this measure pass, he'll fire 5 workers immediately since his company has 25 employees. By the way, San Francisco minimum wage is $8.62.

http://www.sfgov.org/site/mayor_page.asp?id=28520
Myster X is offline  
Old 11-25-05, 12:20 AM
  #23  
X
Administrator
 
X's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 1987
Location: AA-
Posts: 10,675
It's not like businesses are clamoring to come into S.F. It's hard enough for S.F. to keep them here instead of their moving to the East Bay. Even the North Bay is taking business from S.F. So many of the workers don't live in the city why should the company be in the city?

So what do the supervisors do? Make it harder to keep businesses in S.F.
X is offline  
Old 11-25-05, 08:41 AM
  #24  
bhk
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: May 1999
Location: Right of Atilla The Hun
Posts: 19,749
http://www.townhall.com/opinion/colu...05/170348.html
Give credit where credit is due. The political left is great with words. Conservatives have never been able to come up with such seductive phrases as the left mass produces.


While conservatives may talk about a need for "judicial restraint," liberals cry out for "social justice." If someone asks you why they should be in favor of judicial restraint, you have got to sit them down and go into a long explanation about constitutional government and its implications and prerequisites.

But "social justice"? No explanation needed. No definition. No facts. Everybody is for it. Do you want social injustice?

The latest verbal coup of the left is the phrase "a living wage." Who is so hard-hearted or mean-spirited that they do not want people to be able to make enough money to live on?

Unfortunately, the effort and talent that the left puts into coining great phrases is seldom put into facts or analysis. The living wage campaign shows that as well.

Just what is a living wage? It usually means enough income to support a family of four on one paycheck. This idea has swept through various communities, churches and academic institutions.

Facts have never yet caught up with this idea and analysis is lagging even farther behind.

First of all, do most low-wage workers actually have a family of four to support on one paycheck? According to a recent study by the Cato Institute, fewer than one out of five minimum wage workers has a family to support. These are usually young people just starting out.

So the premise is false from the beginning. But it is still a great phrase, and that is apparently what matters, considering all the politicians, academics and church groups who are stampeding all and sundry toward the living wage concept.

What the so-called living wage really amounts to is simply a local minimum wage policy requiring much higher pay rates than the federal minimum wage law. It's a new minimum wage.

Since there have been minimum wage laws for generations, not only in the United States, but in other countries around the world, you might think that we would want to look at what actually happens when such laws are enacted, as distinguished from what was hoped would happen.

Neither the advocates of this new minimum wage policy nor the media -- much less politicians -- show any interest whatsoever in facts about the consequences of minimum wage laws.

Most studies of minimum wage laws in countries around the world show that fewer people are employed at artificially higher wage rates. Moreover, unemployment falls disproportionately on lower skilled workers, younger and inexperienced workers, and workers from minority groups.

The new Cato Institute study cites data showing job losses in places where living wage laws have been imposed. This should not be the least bit surprising. Making anything more expensive almost invariably leads to fewer purchases. That includes labor.

While trying to solve a non-problem -- supporting families that don't exist, in most cases -- the living wage crusade creates a very real problem of low-skilled workers having trouble finding a job at all.

People in minimum wage jobs do not stay at the minimum wage permanently. Their pay increases as they accumulate experience and develop skills. It increases an average of 30 percent in just their first year of employment, according to the Cato Institute study. Other studies show that low-income people become average-income people in a few years and high-income people later in life.

All of this depends on their having a job in the first place, however. But the living wage kills jobs.

As imposed wage rates rise, so do job qualifications, so that less skilled or less experienced workers become "unemployable." Think about it. Every one of us would be "unemployable" if our pay rates were raised high enough.

I would love to believe that the Hoover Institution would continue to hire me if I demanded double my current salary. But you notice that I don't make any such demand. Third parties need to stop making such demands for other people. It is more important for people to have jobs than for busybodies to feel noble.

Thomas Sowell is a Rose and Milton Friedman Senior Fellow.
He's talking about localized imposed increased minimum wage laws but the effect is the same.
bhk is offline  
Old 11-26-05, 04:07 PM
  #25  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Capitol of the Empire! Center of all Commerce and Culture! Crossroads of Civilization! NEW ROME!!!...aka New York City
Posts: 10,909
This is a great measure to ensure that the unemployment lines stay long..."Hell, I can save 62000 a year by firing 4 people and staying at 19 employees!"

And good luck trying to sue for wrongful termination if you were the 21st employee

"Your honor, he was costing me 62000 a year"
Tommy Ceez is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.