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Businesses get one-year extension before they must offer healthcare to employees

Pressure is now off for special session of Florida legislature to hammer out details of how Affordable Care Act will work for state’s businesses

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But it is happening. In fact, while big business breathed a sigh of relief last week, regular people without insurance were starting to hear the first trickle of news about individual insurance programs through a subsidized federal exchange. There aren’t many specifics yet, mind, just that beginning Oct. 1, the federal government will launch its Florida exchange (because, you’ll remember, Florida decided it didn’t want to operate its own exchange when it decided that the ACA isn’t really happening) and those without insurance will sign up for some level of coverage in order to avoid an annual tax fee (beginning at $95, to increase each year).

And herein lies the problem, one that the Miami Herald alludes to. Much of the pressure on the legislature to call a special session was coming from big business interests (and hospitals) who were afraid of getting fined. Now that businesses aren’t getting fined, it’s unlikely that they’ll be that hot and heavy for a special session. Backs are being scratched, but they aren’t human ones. The mandate is now specifically against the people and not the employers, which sort of unlevels the playing field. We only have two words left on this subject: single payer. Oh, and also: too late.

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