HR 1391 to Strengthen Social Security

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SSA Chief Actuary Letter

(Washington) – Today, Congressman John B. Larson released details of the Social Security 2100 Act, H.R. 1391. Authored and introduced by Congressman Larson, the proposal stands to comprehensively strengthen benefits for current and future Social Security beneficiaries while keeping the program strong through the 21st Century:

“Social Security is America’s insurance program. In fact, it’s the insurance you have paid for!”said Larson. “Social Security lifts Americans, including children, out of poverty and boosts our economy as a whole. This is a system we can count on, and by taking common-sense, gradual steps, we can ensure that Social Security benefits keep up with the needs of current and future generations.”

“We applaud Representative Larson for sponsoring such important, visionary legislation,” said Nancy Altman and Eric Kingston, founding Co-directors of Social Security Works, in a joint statement. “In recognition of a looming retirement income crisis, an increasing squeeze on middle class families, and rising income inequality, Representative Larson has introduced The Social Security 2100 Act, which is an important step in addressing all three. Among other important improvements, it increases benefits for all current and future beneficiaries and switches to the more accurate CPI-E to better protect benefits from eroding over time. He pays for the improvements in responsible, balanced ways, including by requiring the wealthiest to pay more of their fair share and by increasing the return on Social Security’s $2.8 trillion reserve.”

Larson’s proposal improves Social Security benefits by providing:

  • Benefit bump for current and new beneficiaries – Everyone will see modest increase starting in 2015.
  • Improved cost of living adjustments (COLA) by adopting the CPI-E formula.
  • A tax break to over 10 million Social Security recipients by raising the threshold for taxation on benefits for individual and joint filers.
  • Protection for low income workers because no one who paid into the system should come out poor. It would set a new minimum benefit that will be 25% above the poverty line.

Social Security is currently estimated to remain solvent until the early 2030’s. According to the Social Security Administration’s Chief Actuary Stephen C. Goss, Larson’s proposal would make the Social Security Trust Fund fully solvent beyond the 75-year projection period (2088) and put the system into actuarial balance.

Larson’s proposal keeps Social Security strong through the 21st Century by ensuring millionaires and billionaires pay into the system like every American, by gradually increasing the payroll tax on workers and employers starting in 2018, equivalent to 50 cents per week cumulatively, and investing a portion of the reserve back into the American economy to double the rate of return on assets held by the Trust Fund.



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