Last week Congressman John Larson (D-Conn.), Chairman of the Social Security Subcommittee of the House Ways and Means Committee, introduced a revised version of the Social Security 2100 bill.
The bill has nearly 200 co-sponsors in the House and has been endorsed by over 100 groups, including TSCL. We have been working with the Congressman’s office all year and we are very pleased the bill has now been re-introduced in its revised form.
“For too long, Congress has forsaken its duty to enhance benefits. With 10,000 Baby Boomers a day becoming eligible, and with Millennials needing Social Security more than any generation, the time for Congress to act is now,” said Larson.
According to a press release from the subcommittee, if enacted, the bill:
- Increases Social Security benefits for seniors
- Protects benefits preventing a 20% cut in 2034
- Is fully paid for by making millionaires and billionaires pay their fair share The Social Security 2100 Act Increases Benefits
- Provides an increase for all beneficiaries that is the equivalent to about 2% of the average benefit.
- Improves the annual cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) formula to better reflect the costs incurred by seniors through adopting a CPI-E formula.
- Protects low-income workers –The new minimum benefit will be set at 25% above the poverty line and would be tied to wage levels to ensure that the minimum benefit does not fall behind.
- Improves benefits for widows and widowers in two income household
- Repeals the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) and Government Pension Offset (GPO) that currently penalize many public servants.
- Ends the 5-month waiting period to receive disability benefits.
- Provides caregiver credits to ensure that caregivers are not penalized in retirement for taking time out of the workforce to care for children or other dependents.
- Increases access to benefits for children who live with grandparents or other relatives.
- Extends the depletion date (when a 20% cut to benefits would occur) to 2038 – Giving Congress more time to ensure long term solvency of the Trust Funds.
- Social Security Trust Fund Established – Social Security provides all-in-one retirement, survivor, and disability benefits funded through the dedicated FICA contribution paid by workers. There are technically two trust funds, Old-Age and Survivors (OASI) and Disability Insurance (DI), and that are usually referred to as the Social Security Trust Fund. This provision combines the OASI & DI trust funds into one Social Security Trust Fund, to ensure that all benefits will be paid.
We will have further information on the bill as things develop. It is not likely to be acted upon this year but we expect there to be a major effort to pass it next year.