Legislative Update for Week Ending September 1, 2017

Legislative Update for Week Ending September 1, 2017

For this week, lawmakers in the House and Senate remained in their home states and districts for the final week before they return to Washington following the Labor Day holiday.

August Congressional Recess Continues

Lawmakers from both the House and Senate remained in their home states and districts for the last week of the month-long August recess. They are expected to return to Washington on September 5th, where they will face many important challenges including lifting the debt ceiling and passing a spending bill to continue funding the government.

In the meantime, many Members of Congress will be attending local events and hosting town hall meetings in their home states and districts. The Senior Citizens League (TSCL) encourages its members and supporters to attend these events and to ask questions about their Social Security and Medicare benefits, such as the following …

1. Background Information: Social Security beneficiaries received another record-low cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) of just 0.3% this year. But if the COLA were based on a more accurate measure of inflation for seniors like the Consumer Price Index for the Elderly (CPI-E), they would be receiving an increase of 2.1% according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Question: Do you support legislation that would give older Americans a more fair and adequate Social Security COLA?
2. Background Information: Roughly 56% of older taxpaying households paid income taxes on a portion of their Social Security benefits this year, even though many of them only made twice the federal poverty level in income. Question: Do you believe this is fair, and if not, what should be done about it?
3. 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?

For more information on town hall meetings near you during the August recess, click HERE. For more sample town hall questions, read this month’s Legislative Update HERE.