Skip to comments.Five Guys: Obamacare will boost burger prices [job losses because of Obamacare]
Posted on 03/11/2013 9:22:40 PM PDT by grundle
The fight over Obamacare, so far held at the 30,000-foot level, is about to hit home. The latest impact hot off the grill: prices of burgers and hot dogs at Five Guys, the national chain that started in Washington, are going to rise to cover the president's mandated insurance coverage.
"Any added costs are going to have to be passed on," said Mike Ruffer, a Five Guys franchise holder with eight of the popular restaurants in the Raleigh-Durham, N.C. area. He will need all the profits from at least one of his eight outlets just to cover his estimated added $60,000-a year in new Obamacare costs.
What's more, he's iced plans to build another three restaurants until after the administration explains the exact rules and penalties employers will face. The law's plan to have those available March 1 has been pushed back to October.
"I'm kind of in a holding pattern," said Ruffer, a former Marriott executive who added that many franchise owners are in a similar situation.
Ruffer was the star witness at a Monday Heritage Foundation seminar on the impact Obamacare will have on small businesses. He is typical of many: Because he has enough full time employees to activate the law, he faces either coughing up the money to provide health insurance or paying a fine of up to $3,000 per worker.
Ruffer initially thought he would escape the law because he created each restaurant as its own company. But the law doesn't recognize that distinction, so now he's trying to determine if he can fire enough workers, or cut enough hours, to slide out of the grasp of Obamacare.
He said that "scorched earth plan," however, would hurt his restaurants, so Ruffer is likely to either pay the fine or buy insurance. But spreading the costs over his basic menu of fries, drinks, burgers and hot dogs, could scare off customers, he worries. He said that the recent spike in gas prices cut into his profits since fewer people were stopping at his restaurants.
And the health care law isn't only going to hit Ruffer. He's quizzed his workers to ask if they understand that they will be fined if they don't get health insurance. Just one of 20 workers were aware of the $95 tax penalty that rises to $695 by 2016.
Thanks for the correction null and void!
My Mom took food stamps after divorcing, for two years.
We always had steak, pork chops and Sunday fried chicken. She never bought any boxed food except for oatmeal, cream o wheat, cheers and corn flakes. if you wanted sugar we weren’t allowed more than two teaspoons.
She marveled at how she could feed us and have guests but, moreover, we always had good food and at the end of the month, she gave her leftover food stamps to a family not even 1/2 the size of our family. there were 5 kids in our family and two in theirs
They couldn’t make it on the food stamps they were given.
My Mom, to this day, remarks how they never learned not to eat from a box .
Whole foods are cheaper and healthier.
They don’t need CrapDonalds. cept maybe the dollar chicken sandwich.... now I’m hungry
Da nada. Your turn to cover my back!
Yep, Five Guys, Burger Fi, and some other chains are a much better value, a little more money, but a lot more freshness and some level of hybrid service also. Those who compare them to BK or McDonalds (and I like BK too) are making a flawed comparison. But as you say, the money is not that much difference anyway.
You were blessed to have such a great mom!
Just talked to some locals who are facing govenment cutbacks at the town level. I feel sad for them, but at the same time, all four were Hussain voters.
I have seen a number of people get their hours cut back. 40’s to 32.
I want to tell them to be grateful they have any job right now.