Two years into the Trump Administration the economy is strong, and that’s good for business. With two more years to go, how can we expect this administration’s policies to work even more for small businesses?
Brian Blase, Special Assistant to the President for Economic Policy, National Economic Council, gives us some answers.
What is the Trump Administration Doing to Help Small Businesses?
In a nutshell:
- On a macro-level, the administration cut taxes on businesses.
- Looking to deregulate.
- Unemployment rate under 4%.
- More job openings than we have workers to fill those openings.
- Economic growth in excess of 3%.
- Rising workers’ wages.
Brian shares that the administration is aware that the cost of healthcare for small businesses has gone up over the last decade. As a result, fewer small businesses are offering insurance to their workers. According to Brian, the administration is looking at opening up options for small businesses through 2 plans:
Association Health Plans- makes it easier for small businesses to join together to offer more affordable coverage and take advantage of some of the regulatory benefits that large employers get on health insurance.
There are 28 AHPs that have formed under these new rules so far and they’re seeing premium savings of up to 30%.
Health Reimbursement Arrangements- tax-preferred contributions that employers make to employees for employees to pick the insurance that the employee wants in the individual market. This increases the choice of coverage and offers an opportunity for small businesses to provide a contribution for workers to purchase insurance.
Health Reimbursement Arrangements address the problem that fewer employers are offering coverage to their workers.
Choice, Competition, and Innovation
Brian states that they “know innovation is the only way to make things better and more affordable over time.”
“Choice fuels competition and competition fuels innovation.”
As Special Assistant to the President for Economic Policy, National Economic Council Brian is well aware that in health care, “innovation has lagged behind the rest of the economy and we have a lot of government rules that restrict choice and competition.” He said that they are working to knock down those government rules and loosen them in order to increase choice, increase competition, and increase innovation and productivity in the healthcare sector.