New Social Security Bill on COLA, WEP, and more
Rep. John Larson (D-CT) announced he will introduce Social Security 2100: A Sacred Trust this week on the heels of last week’s news that the Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA) will be 5.9% for 2022, the highest increase in 40 years. The bill would do a number of things as per below, but ALL would hasten the insolvency of Social Security, now just over a decade away, and imperil its long term financial health for short term political gain. Many provisions appear to turn the earned benefit features of Social Security into more of a welfare program: 1.) Benefit bump of 2% for current and new beneficiaries; 2.) use a new COLA formula called CPI-E; 3.) set a 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; 4.) Improved benefits for widows; 5.) Repeals the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) and Government Pension Offset (GPO); 6.) Ends the five month waiting period to receive disability benefits; 7.) Provides caregiver credits; 8.) Extends benefits for students through age 22. John Sullivan, editor in chief of 401 Specialist explains the bill here.
AMAC believes Social Security must be preserved and modernized and will oppose bills like this one that hasten its demise. This can be achieved with no tax increases by changing cost of living adjustments, the retirement age, and delayed credits. AMAC advocates for a bipartisan compromise, “The Social Security Guarantee Act,” taking selected portions of bills introduced by former Rep. Johnson (R-TX) and current Rep. Larson (D-CT) and merging them with the Association’s own research. One component is Social Security PLUS, a voluntary plan to allow all earners to have more income at retirement. This component is intended to appeal especially to younger workers. AMAC is resolute in its mission that Social Security be preserved and modernized and has gotten the attention of lawmakers in DC, meeting with a great many congressional offices and their staffs over the past several years. Read AMAC’s plan here.