SeaWorld Slashes Worker Hours to Avoid Obamacare Fines
SeaWorld has announced plans to slash thousands of part-time workers' hours to no more than 28 hours a week. Reducing part-time workers' current 32 hours a week down to 28 weekly hours will avoid Obamacare's 30-hour full-time trigger that forces employers to provide comprehensive health insurance benefits or face up to $3,000 per employee in fines.
SeaWorld's public relations department offered scant details on its plans but said the move "is intended to bring consistency to the part-time designation across the SeaWorld Parks system." SeaWorld says part-time workers' hours will be cut beginning in November but would not answer whether Obamacare prompted the decision.
"There is no other reason to change your cap from 32 hours to 28 other than" Obamacare, former Walt Disney World executive and University of Central Florida hospitality management professor Duncan Dickson told the Orlando Sentinel.
He added: "I hear my kids [students] talking about getting their hours cut. Everybody's very attuned to the 30-hour thing."
SeaWorld is not alone in cutting hours to avoid Obamacare. Last week, Investor's Business Daily published a list of 258 employers who have slashed worker hours or laid off workers in advance of Obamacare's grand opening in 19 days.