The House on Wednesday passed a bill (H.R. 6311) that contains a Farm Bureau-supported two-year delay of the Health Insurance Tax. The HIT has increased health insurance costs by imposing a levy on the net premiums of health insurance companies, which is passed on to consumers.
The vote “to suspend the HIT for two years is a tremendous step forward for millions of small businesses and their employees who face undue costs from the tax,” the Stop the HIT Coalition, of which the American Farm Bureau Federation is a member, said in a recent statement after the House voted to pass the Increasing Access to Lower Premium Plans and Expanding Health Savings Accounts Act. “We now urge the Senate to take up this two-year delay as soon as possible and provide small business owners and their employees with immediate and necessary cost savings of as much as $570 on average in the small group market.”
During 2014, $8 billion in excise taxes were levied, and $11 billion was collected in 2015 and 2016 each. The tax is on hold through 2019 but since the cost of the HIT increases each year, Americans will face an even higher HIT impact in 2020.
In addition to delaying the HIT for two years, the measure would expand access to lower-cost health care options and encourage health care savings.