Senator Joe Donnelly pushing to keep full-time defined as 40-hou - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

Senator Joe Donnelly pushing to keep full-time defined as 40-hours

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Senator Joe Donnelly is continuing his push to redefine 'full-time employees,' as working 40-hours per week, and not 30-hours per week as laid out in the Affordable Care Act.

30 is the new 40 when it comes to fill-time hours under the Affordable Care Act, but Senator Joe Donnelly says he wants 40 to stay right where it is.

"40 hours has always been traditionally, the full-time work week," says Senator Donnelly.

The health care mandate has some public and private employers cutting part-time employee hours below the 30-hours per week, to avoid the insurance requirement.

"For the workers, some of them were losing hours where they may be working 35 or 36, and they're not working 28," says Donnelly. "What we're trying to do is make it that the traditional definition of 40-hours. The traditional definition will be used in the Affordable Care Act as well."

Since the ACA was approved, Gibson County cut it's part-time max from 30 to 23.5-hours per week and Spencer County is looking into it as well.

Marsha Abell, the President of Vanderburgh County Commissioners, says Donnelly's plan could keep the county from having to make some tough decisions.

"It's going to make a different when we renegotiate our health insurance on January 1, 2015," says Marsha. "How many people are then going to be on our health policy? You really need to know exactly where that is going to fall. I really commend him for trying to do this."

The employer mandate has been delayed and won't go into effect until 2015. Donnelly says that gives him more time to gather congressional support. 

"We're just going to work through our colleagues one by one, personal meetings, and I think we'll be able to gather significant steam to move this forward," says Donnelly.

Donnelly says he has no timeframe on when the bill could go to the senate floor for a vote.

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