Legislative Update Week Ending February 16 2018
Social Security Can Be Fixed Without Benefit Cuts .Sources: "Appeals Panel Weighs Fate of Obama's Immigration Overhaul," Michael Shear, The New York Times, April 17, 201"Effects Of Unauthorized Immigration On The Actuarial Status Of The Social Security Trust Funds," Actuarial Note 151, Social Security Administration, April 2013. .If the bill is going to reach the President's desk for his signature the House will have to agree to the changes the Senate made and pass it one more time. It may take a couple of weeks if that is to happen, however, because the House will not be back in session until the week of April 12. … Continued
Medicare The Senior Citizens League
Only a little more than half of the nation's nursing homes had received inspections, according to data released earlier this month, which prompted Medicare and Medicaid chief Seema Verma to direct that states complete the checks by July 31 or risk losing federal recovery funds. .You should still watch out for symptoms of COVID-19, especially if you've been around someone who is sick. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you should get tested and stay home and away from others. .In January, lawmakers on Capitol Hill will likely begin efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act, overhaul the tax code, dramatically alter trade deals, and confirm a new Supreme Court Justice. It remains to be seen which other policy issues will be prioritized by the Republican Congress. Efforts to reform the Social Security and Medicare programs have been on the table for years, and in the platform that the Republican party adopted back in July, lawmakers agreed that "of the many reforms being proposed, all options should be considered." Proposals to raise the Medicare eligibility age or to adopt the "chained" CPI – which would result in more slowly-growing Social Security cost-of-living adjustments – could see congressional action in 2017. … Continued
Did Members of Congress receive a COLA this year? If so did they get more than the 3.6% that seniors received? Is it true they don't pay into Social Security? .(Washington, DC) –Today's announcement of a 0.3 percent cost - of - living adjustment (COLA) is another major disappointment to the 60 million people who depend on Social Security, says The Senior Citizens League (TSCL.) "The consumer price index (CPI) that the government uses to determine the annual COLA is simply not doing the job of protecting the buying power of older and disabled Americans," says Mary Johnson, TSCL's Social Security policy analyst. .Tax Plan Moves to Conference Committee .Provide a one-time bump – up in monthly benefits for all beneficiaries. A higher level of monthly benefits would mean more adequate COLAs and a greater ability to afford Medicare Part B premium increases in coming years. .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. .Many Members of Congress who have been long-time friends to seniors and those who have introduced key bills for The Senior Citizens League (TSCL) fared well in Tuesday's elections. Rep. Peter DeFazio (OR-4) (sponsor of the CPI-E Act) won re-election, as did Rep. Linda Sanchez (CA-38) (sponsor of the Strengthening Social Security Act), Rep. Rodney Davis (IL-13) (sponsor of the Social Security Fairness Act), and Rep. Walter Jones (NC-3) (sponsor of the Social Security Guarantee Act). .Is the annual amount of coverage capped? Dental plans often cover only a certain amount of dental services, up to a cap such as 0 to ,500 per year. The cost of preventive services such as cleanings and X-rays is generally not subtracted from the maximum, but it's important that you find out. If you think you will be needing pricey services soon, then look for the plan that offers the highest amount of coverage at the lowest cost. .Since the start of CPI-E in 1983, the average difference between it and the CPI-W is roughly .25 percentage point per year. Sounds tiny but, like interest, it compounds over time. Had the CPI-E been used to determine COLAs since 2015, your benefit would be about 2% higher today. An average benefit of ,215 per month in 2015 will increase to ,298 per month in 2020. But had the CPI-E been used to calculate the COLAs, that benefit would have been per month more or ,324 in 2020. .Despite the fact that leaders are holding steadfast on their positions, a small bipartisan group in the House proposed a plan on Thursday that would fund the government for six months and repeal the health care law's controversial tax on medical devices. The leaders of the bipartisan group – Reps. Ron Kind (WI-3) and Charlie Dent (PA-15) – believe their proposal represents a fair compromise that both sides can support.