Cleveland-area business owners express confusion, anxiety over Affordable Care Act

MENTOR, Ohio - Local small business owners say they have numerous questions about the new federal health care legislation commonly called Obamacare and very few answers.

"I don't fully understand what is expected of me as an employer and we always want to do the right thing," said Michele Tyers, co-owner of Moving Solutions in Mentor.

Tyers was one of hundreds of small business owners and health care representatives who attended Cleveland Crain's Business Health Care Summit on Wednesday. The keynote speaker, Ohio Lt. Governor Mary Taylor, spoke about how the new law impacts small businesses. But even she said there's a lot of uncertainty.

"Unfortunately, there are a lot of tough questions to answer," Taylor said.

Taylor encouraged her audience to read up on the Affordable Care Act as often as possible.

"Small businesses as well as individual consumers should try to understand what their options are going to be the best way that they can, starting as soon as possible," Taylor said.

Tyers employs about 50 people. She offers health insurance to those who work full time, which is the majority of her workforce.

She said she's still grappling with exactly how the new federal health care law will affect her business, her employees and more so, her bottom line.

"Consequences of this is that we're going to have increased cost and that is a concern," Tyers said. "We don't have a lot of frosting in our expenses."

But she admits that she's most anxious about her inability to assist her employees with the new law since she has little clarity about it herself.

"I'm going to do the best I can for the folks that I'm responsible for," she added.

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