Chaining Colas Still Under Consideration
Recently I had a chance to learn how to do a better job at decision - making by taking a course through the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Virginia. Instructor Terry Newell's work focuses on values-based leadership, ethics, and better decision making — skills for which there is very high demand — but all too short supply. Here are some insights from Dr. Terry Newell: .TSCL's members and supporters tend to be older, less affluent seniors. They are also, to a large extent, Notch victims — those individuals who receive lower Social Security benefits because they were born between the years 1917 and 1926. .The Senior Citizens League can be reached via e-mail at comments@ or you can reach us by telephone at 800-333-TSCL (8725). Our mission is to promote and assist members and supporters, to educate and alert senior citizens about their rights and freedoms as U.S. Citizens, and to protect and defend the benefits senior citizens have earned and paid for. The Senior Citizens League consists of vocally active senior citizens concerned about the protection of their Social Security, Medicare, and veteran or military retiree benefits. … Continued
Benefit Bulletin January 2020
For this week, lawmakers in the House and Senate remained in their home states and districts to continue the month-long August recess. .That's why I'm excited and proud to announce TSCL's endorsement of The Guaranteed 3% COLA for Seniors Act (H.R. 3389) introduced in the House by Representative Eliot Engel (NY-16) and its companion bill in the Senate (S. 1923) introduced by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (RI). TSCL believes this bill will go a long way toward stopping the erosion in the buying power of your Social Security benefits. Now it's your turn. You can help draw attention to this legislation by contacting your Members of Congress and asking them to co-sponsor The Guaranteed 3% COLA for Seniors Act. For contact info or to send an email to your elected lawmakers visit the TSCL at . .The further we read into the Affordable Care Act, the more we learn it doesn't address the issues of rising costs and access to quality care. A majority of my patients were either Medicare beneficiaries or Medicaid recipients. I understand the importance of these issues and want you to know that I am working hard to ensure everyone, especially seniors, has access to quality care and to keep the Federal Government out of the way when it comes to making the important decisions that affect your health and well being. … Continued
Social Security is a promise our country must keep. If you work and pay into the system, you should have the opportunity to retire with dignity and respect. This promise is part of what makes America exceptional — the idea that after a lifetime of work, Americans deserve security in retirement. .Despite our nation's recent partisan political divisions, two surveys by The Senior Citizens League (TSCL) found high levels of consensus on five proposals that would strengthen Social Security and Medicare funding and benefits. The proposals would decrease Medicare out - of - pocket costs on prescription drugs for beneficiaries and provide modestly higher, and more adequate, Social Security benefits. "There are more areas of agreement from retirees of different political persuasions than many might believe," says Mary Johnson, a Social Security and Medicare policy analyst for The Senior Citizens League. .Social Security Earnings Repeal Act Introduced in the House .Before the Affordable Care Act, seniors could deduct out-of-pocket medical costs that exceeded 7.5 percent of their Adjusted Gross Income (AGI). Starting in 2017, however, the law increases this threshold to 10% of a person's AGI – effectively lowering how much can be deducted at the end of the year and increasing how much seniors will pay in taxes. .In fact, when the COLA increases since 2000 are compared with the typical cost increases that retirees experienced over the same period, Social Security benefits have lost 34% of their buying power. COLAs increased benefits a total of 46 percent, while typical senior expenses have jumped 96.3 percent between 2000 through the first week of 201To put it in perspective, for every 0 worth of groceries a retiree household could afford in 2000, they can only buy worth today. .This year, more than 50 percent of Social Security beneficiaries paid taxes on their benefits, even though many of them only made little more than twice the federal poverty level in income. Do you believe this is fair and, if not, what should be done about it? .In particular, the expert witnesses at last week's hearing focused on isolation from the community, Medicare penalties for late enrollment, and a lack of funding for State Health Insurance Assistance Programs (SHIPs), which help older Americans navigate Medicare enrollment. .The Preserve Access to Affordable Generics and Biosimilars Act (S. 64), also introduced by Senators Grassley and Klobuchar, would prohibit anti-competitive pay-for-delay deals that keep much cheaper generic and biosimilar medicines off the market. .At this point, it appears as though Burwell is on an easy road to confirmation. She will face two votes in the coming weeks – one from the Finance Committee and one from the full Senate. TSCL will keep a close eye on the nomination process since the outcome will have a considerable impact on the future of the Social Security and Medicare programs. For updates, visit the Legislative News section of our website.