Two More Days

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Five Guys owner confirms that it may cost more to get ‘fries with that’ with that because of Obamacare

Five Guys Burgers and Fries Logo

Thanks to President Barack Obama and his signature health care law, you may not be able to afford fries with that burger at Five Guys in the near future.

President Obama and his administration will celebrate the third anniversary of Affordable Care Act, known to most as “Obamacare,” on Tuesday, but for many business owners and consumers there will be little to celebrate.

At a Heritage Foundation event in Washington, D.C. today, Five Guys Burgers and Fries franchise Mike Ruffer said the costs incurred to comply with Obamacare was forcing him to make some very difficult decisions about how to financially manage his business.

“Likely, any added cost to the business is going to have to get passed through to the customer,” Ruffer said at the “Part Time America? – Impact of Obamacare” panel  Monday afternoon.

Ruffer, who owns Five Guys francises in North Carolina and Virginia, explained that he signed a deal in 2004 to build 11 of the burger joints, not knowing the economy would come crashing down a few years later and that the government would mandate that he provide healthcare to employees working over 30 hours a week.

Ruffer said he thought he would be safe from the repercussions of Obamacare because he opened each restaurant under a separate Limited Liability Company (LLC) and no more than 20 people worked at any one burger place. Unfortunately, under the umbrella of Obamacare, if a person or family members own all the establishments, then they are considered one entity, bringing small businessman like Ruffer under the purview of the law.

The Five Guys owner said he employs 147 people, 60 of whom work more than 30 hours per week, which is considered full-time under Obamacare. Ruffer said he will either have to fire or reduce the hours of 31 employees in order to avoid paying for their insurance. The cost of paying for their healthcare would be added on top of the roughly $2.4 million he spent on last year’s payroll.

When Obamacare comes to full fruition in 2014, the law will cost him the profit equal to one of his Five Guys Burgers and Fries.

Still, Ruffer noted that he needs those employees to maximize his profits. He must expand expand his business to to three more restaurants regardless of Obamacare due to his agreement with the corporation, which is why he sees charging the consumer more as his only real viable option.

Many franchise owners are feeling the same Obamacare induced heart burn as Raffer. Quiznos, Burger King, Subway, McDonalds and Dunkin Donuts have also voiced concerns about how the costs associated with Obamacare will affect local franchise owners’ hiring and firing decisions as well as menu pricing.

“I don’t have the profit margin to pay for it,” one franchise owner told the Wall Streed Journal last year.

This news is especially bad for young people and recent college grads who are most likely to work in these part time jobs and are still facing a 12.5 percent unemployment rate. Getting a part time to job pay for school or pay back student loans will likely get a little bit harder in the coming year.

Comments

Comments

  1. James DAmaro says:

    THIS IS ONE REASON I CALL king obama THE AMERICIAN DESTROYER.

  2. James Epting says:

    Who would want to do business with a guy who treats his employees this way…I’ll just add this to my list of wingnut businessmen….semperfi.

    1. Up Yours, Mac! says:

      Good. Don’t know anyone who’d want to share your air. Obviously you’re in the “taker” category, not the “maker” one. Hope you’ve signed on to paying more for your health insurance, having your co-pays increased, access more limited, and retirement benefits reduced. Which is what Obama has in store for you. IF the Semper Fi has any factual base behind it.
      Doubt it though. Never met a gyrene who’d see his country destroyed for the sake of one party’s wet dreams.
      Forgotten your Oath of Allegiance, have you?

    2. EHeassler USN-Ret. says:

      Treats his employees in what way? In order for those employees to even have a job in his establishments, they must first remain in business. When businesses spend more than they make, they fold and then they offer no jobs. Zero. Nada. In what manner would your recommend that he treat his employees?

    3. Dabigragu says:

      You obviously don’t own a business, you don’t have any idea what your talking about.
      Semper Fidelis…

  3. Thea Patriot says:

    Here is some grounds for a suit against ObamaCare if any small businesses or lawyers are out there. Equal Protection under the Law- Alaska Native 8(a) firms are treated as small businesses by the federal government no matter how huge they or the legal structure. Despite being treated like small businesses, even if the make in excess of $35M per year and employ more than 500 employees, they are exempt to ObamaCare. Being tribal doesn’t give you a blank check, exemption to the law, and a work around from the ObamaCare Punishment. Why aren’t white guy businesses given the same protection from ObamaCare as Alaskan Natives?

    1. Would this be cause to file a discrimination case against the Fed Gov? Pasty white people (like me) don’t receive the same benefits as other Americans. Is that fair and balanced, or equal? Don’t think so. Might be time to turn their words and behavior against them, meaning the progressives. If we don’t stand up in protest, but instead continue to act like sheeple, you can count on continued discrimination against success, continued taxation and regulation of business in America in order to punish success and reward the sloths.

  4. Ron says:

    You know before the election over half the Nation said the country was going in the wrong direction. So what did we do? We as a Nation voted Obama again. It really is true, History does repeat itself, and it only took 4 years this time. Obama is a train wreck. He never been a leader always a follower. You can’t lead from behind. In his second term Obama like the devil was thinking he was bigger than God. Well he was thinking the same thing in his first term. He wants to tear down this Nation and he will unless people stop talking and take action to block his stupid ways. Burgers and Fries are already to high now. But i understand because of higher gas prices and so on and so on. What a bunch of fools this country has turn out. All the things that use to be good is bad now, and all the things that use to be bad are good now. I have given up on this country because it has lost it’s way in the world. We were a Great Nation, we still could be the Greatest Nation, but we are not going to be anymore. The people that made this country great with God’s help are gone and are dying off. We are in a time where you can’t find good jobs, you have to work two or three to make up for one job. I guess this is what the country likes now days. Obama God will judge you one day just as he will the many great leaders in the past. I pity you, you fool. You laugh in the the faces of Christian people but other people that want to go out and worship a goat or something that’s there right. You will go down in my history book as a thug. Have a nice day.

    1. Pat says:

      There is one chance left: The House has a resolution HR36 to do an extensive investigation into Benghazi. Remember Benghazi? The mainstream media is trying to bury the story since the news came out that there is already enough evidence in the Benghazi information to start impeachment proceedings. There are already 48 co-sponsors to the resolution – are your reps for the investigation or still Obama fans who believe he can do no wrong? It’s posted at thomas.gov America deserves to know what happened that night, the truth behind the coverups and to press charges against the guilty ones…

  5. TraderJo says:

    GREAT idea! Every business saddled with extra costs required by the goofernment should identify those increased costs so that even the low information voters will know whom to blame.

    Read more: http://nation.foxnews.com/obamacare/2013/03/11/restaurant-charge-more-because-obamacare#ixzz2NKqAlUCb

  6. TraderJo says:

    GREAT idea! Every business saddled with extra costs required by the goofernment should identify those increased costs so that even the low information voters will know whom to blame.

    1. Pegasus says:

      I know where you get the term low information voter… Rush, had they known before the election what was really going on we would of had a new President

  7. Joe Smith says:

    Obviously, now is the ideal time to push for a raise in the minimum wage.

  8. Dennis says:

    When are the American sheeple going to finally get it?? A coup has taken place in Washington. The coup is finished, it is over. We now have a Communist government, just like Nikita Kruschev said we would. Look up “We will bury you.” Kruschev is dead but all that he said they would do has already been done.

  9. steve-o says:

    Well, you have to pass the bill to find out what is in it.

  10. A relative of mine who is a pharmacist also felt the brunt of Obamacare. She works in NJ at a smaller drugstore chain — only about 5 stores in the state. Even though she has been employed full time for many years there, working weekends, night shifts, etc., she was cut back to 20 hours a week to help her company avoid the Obamacare regulations. She is the sole support of three children, one in college. There is going to be a lot of creative book-juggling to avoid getting swept up in it. And wait until the bigger stuff hits the fan next year. OMG.

  11. John Galt says:

    I told you so!

  12. Bob English says:

    Always get a laugh when people who are worth 10’s or 100’s of millions of dollars and start shedding tears when it comes to paying decent wages or providing health care for the people that are working their tails off for him. I would not mind paying a little more for his stinkin fries just as I would not mind paying a few cents more for a pizza from the guy who was crying about having to provide health benefits for his employees.

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