The Affordable Care act could have a major impact on volunteer fire companies. After asking questions and not getting answers for weeks, Congressman Lou Barletta has proposed a bill to protect the fire companies.
“Common sense is not so common here in Washington and I didn’t want to take the chance because I do believe this would close many fire houses around the country, “ says Barletta
Barletta says under the Affordable Care Act volunteer fire companies could be forced to pay for healthcare for the volunteers. He says currently the IRS treats all firefighters as employees, volunteer or not. And since they are treated as employees, employers with at least 50 employees must provide health insurance to those who work 30 hours per week. He’s been leading the move to get clarification on this from the IRS, and since he has yet to hear from them, he’s taking matters into his own hands. He has proposed a bill to protect the companies.
“ There have been over a thousand waivers for special interest groups already. I don`t know what needs to be reviewed here, “ says Barletta
The Protecting Volunteer Firefighters and Emergency Responders Act would exempt them from the Employer Mandate under the Affordable Care Act.
Fox43 did contact the IRS. The IRS told us to contact the U.S Treasury who told us they couldn’t comment at this time.