The Obamacare Surcharge To Save Jobs

From CNN Money: “Now on your restaurant bill: Obamacare fee.”

Diners at eight Gator’s Dockside casual eateries are finding a 1% Affordable Care Act surcharge on their tabs, which comes to 15 cents on a typical $15 lunch tab. Signs on the door and at tables alert diners to the fee, which is also listed separately on the bill.

The Gator Group’s full-time hourly employees won’t actually receive health insurance until December. But the company said it implemented the surcharge now because of the compliance costs it’s facing ahead of the Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate kicking in in 2015.

“The costs associated with ACA compliance could ultimately close our doors,” the sign reads. “Instead of raising prices on our products to generate the additional revenue needed to cover the costs of ACA compliance, certain Gator’s Dockside locations have implemented a 1% surcharge on all food and beverage purchases only.”

The company employs a total of 500 people, with about half working full-time. Currently only management receives health benefits, but the restaurant will have to offer coverage to all full-timers once the mandate takes effect. The fee will allow the company to continue offering full-time hours to many workers, according to Sandra Clark, the group’s director of operations.

“I’m just trying to keep the employees I have that I’ve worked hard to train,” Clark said.

I realize compliance and accounting costs would make it nigh impossible, but I wish we could have a breakdown printed on every item we purchase, listing the amount of taxes built into the price.

If we were to add every bit of tax on the raw products and services that go into every step in the chain to bring us any item, we would surely find that half or more of the price for everything we buy is to sustain our ravenous government. My guess is that just about everyone pays out more than half their wages in taxes, and some people a lot more than half.