• Tag Social Security Cola

    Back in April, President Trump picked out a single computer model of coronavirus spread to use for guidance about the coronavirus. It turns out that that model initially had rosier estimates than others, and it projected many fewer Covid-19 deaths. .Congressional support for a bi-partisan deficit reduction solution before the November 21st deadline is dwindling as each day passes. Republican co-chairman of the joint committee, Rep. Jen Hensarling (TX-5), expressed discontent with Democratic colleagues this week for rejecting the latest GOP offer. "I will give my Democratic colleagues credit for at least putting some reforms on the table, but frankly they do not solve the problem," Hensarling said. .In an interview this week, Rep. Charles Boustany (LA-3), who sits on the House Ways and Means Committee, revealed that the negotiators have hit a road block. They are struggling to come up with an offset for the bill, which could cost as much as 3.2 billion. Rep. Boustany said, "We're running out of time. We may end up with another one-year patch before it's all over. But, you know, we'll keep working, see if we can get to something." TSCL sincerely hopes that those on the three committees will successfully merge their bills to create a permanent, sustainable path forward. We will keep a close eye on the evolving negotiations in the coming weeks, and we will continue to urge lawmakers to repeal and replace the SGR. … Continued

  • Payroll Tax Cuts Worsen Social Security And Medicare Funding Issues

    The extensions will cost approximately 0 billion over ten years, and billion of that will be paid for by spending cuts and revenue increases. The remaining 0 billion, however, will be added to the budget deficit. .Both bills were adopted by the Senate earlier this year and by the House two weeks ago. At a signing ceremony on Wednesday, President Trump said: "This is very strong legislation to end these ‘gag clauses' once and for all … Our citizens deserve to know the lowest price available at our pharmacies, and now that's what they'll be getting." .Is his condition found on the Social Security Administration's list of disabling conditions? This is a list of medical conditions that the Social Security Administration considers so severe that it prevents a person from completing substantial gainful activity. … Continued

Recently the House Budget Committee and the House Energy and Commerce Committee both held hearings on the controversial Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB). The IPAB was created under the healthcare reform law to slow rising Medicare costs. If costs grow too fast, the IPAB would recommend cuts that would go into effect unless Congress comes up with the same amount of savings. Both Committees heard testimony from Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, among many others. ."That estimate tracks closely with the CPI data through August," Johnson says. "Overall inflation readings are very low, but that's almost entirely due to the dramatic drop in oil prices again this year," she notes. Meanwhile, the data show some big jumps in the cost of goods and services that older and disabled Americans use the most. But that won't necessarily translate into higher COLAs, because the index used to calculate the annual Social Security boost is based on the spending patterns of younger working adults. Younger people tend to spend less on health care and housing, and more on gasoline and electronics, two categories that have gone down in recent years. .It is times like these when Social Security benefits are increasingly important, when "the best laid plans" are going awry for millions of seniors. As Congress considers changes to the Social Security system, TSCL is urging Congress to make the need for adequate and stable benefits a priority. .Many observers believe the plan will likely include a combination of tax increases and benefit cuts for Social Security. Some of the most commonly mentioned proposals are: (1) switching to the chained Consumer Price Index (CPI) to calculate Social Security COLAs; (2) lifting or raising the cap on income which is subject to Social Security taxes; and (3) raising the Social Security retirement age. Switching to the chained CPI alone would both reduce initial benefits and cut lifetime Social Security benefits by more than 10%. .Notch Reform continues to be a major priority of seniors who turn 85 to 94 this year. After so many years of receiving lower Social Security benefits than other seniors having similar work and earnings histories, is it any wonder that the majority of "Notch Babies" believe Congress is waiting for the issue to quietly die away? .Background Information: Once Congress returns from the August recess, they will only have until September 30th to raise the debt ceiling and prevent the government from shutting down. In the past, government shutdowns have meant a delay in payments for Social Security benefits, causing unnecessary fiscal hardship for many seniors. Question: What are you doing to ensure the government avoids defaulting on the federal debt? .The U.S. Supreme Court is expected to decide a case in June that could have far -reaching implications for Social Security and Medicare. The Obama Administration has asked the Supreme Court to reinstate its executive action plan on immigration. The plan would give temporary relief from deportation and work permits to almost 5 million unauthorized immigrants. Should the Supreme Court find in favor of President Obama, his Administration would have 7 months to implement the program before his term ends. .Increasing the payroll tax rate. Social Security is currently financed by a 12.4 percent payroll tax, split evenly between employers and employees. Gradually increasing the tax rate to 14.4 percent – just one percent more for both workers and employers – would extend the solvency of the Social Security program for decades to come and would amount to just an extra 50 cents per week for the average worker. .The SSA and the AARP say, however, the Notch affects only those born during the five-year period of 1917 through 192Those born during that period were covered by a special transitional benefit formula, the purpose of which was to provide a 5-year phase-in for the new 1977 benefit formula.