Madelyn Alfano is no dummy. This native of Hoboken has spent the last 25 years building up a successful chain of restaurants in Los Angeles called Maria's Italian Kitchen. She's President of the LA chapter of the California Restaurant Association.
But ask her what she's supposed to do next to expand healthcare coverage from 50 fulltime employees to all 400 of her workers, and she draws a blank. "I just read a 30-page summary of what the healthcare bill is supposed to do and mean," she says. "And I read it again. I read it two times, I was so confused." She knows that within four years she will need to provide coverage, but she has a lot of questions. For example, if she has a part-time waiter who works a second job at another restaurant, "Who pays for that?" She's also concerned that she'll be paying workers comp, sick days, general liability, AND healthcare. "Something's gotta give."