Dec 9, 2008

Forty Organizations Lobby On Social Security Budget

The National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU), which represents 900 Social Security employees at Social Security's Office of Disability Adjudication and Review, issued a press release Monday on Social Security's budget situation. Here are some excerpts:
The nation’s largest independent union of federal employees has joined with a group of 40 organizations in urging key members of the House and Senate to support additional funding to allow the Social Security Administration (SSA) to make significant inroads in the growing and highly damaging backlog of disability appeals hearings ...

The message from NTEU and other groups comes on the heels of a similar request from House and Ways Committee Chairman Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) and the heads of two Ways and Means subcommittees to Rep. David Obey (D-Wis.), chairman of the House Appropriations Committee. ...

The organizations seek final administrative funding for SSA in fiscal 2009 of no less than the House-recommended level of $10.427 billion—which is $100 million above the president’s budget request. The administration’s budget proposal did recommend an increase in SSA administrative funds, but the groups say that proposal is insufficient. “We strongly believe” funding of less than $10.427 billion “would exacerbate the massive backlog” of disability appeals hearings, they wrote.
It is unfortunate that these groups feel that they must still fight for an appropriation for Social Security for the current fiscal year that is only $100 million above President Bush's inadequate budget recommendation. The contrast with the bailouts is obvious. We must hope for much better for the next fiscal year which will begin on October 1, 2009.

I have reproduced on the separate Social Security Perspectives blog the letter that this forty organization coalition sent to the relevant Congressional committees.


Anonymous said...

The total cost of funds committed to the bailout in its various guises has now hit $8.5 trillion dollars, up from $7.7 trillion in just two days after the federal government committed an additional $800 billion to two new loan programs on Tuesday.

The total amount of funds now committed equals a figure that represents 60 per cent of the U.S. gross domestic product.

Not counting what they are going to give the Ford, GM and Chrysler.

So where does this craziness stop? SSA needs to make do with the $10.427 billion.

Anonymous said...

Spend Spend Spend Let the good times roll.

The problem is, "if you print money all the time, the money becomes worth less," Rogers says. This usually leads to higher inflation and higher interest rates. The value of the dollar also falls because foreign investors become less willing to invest in the United States.

Key dates in the federal government's campaign to alleviate the economic crisis.

March 11: The Federal Reserve announces a rescue package to provide up to $200 billion in loans to banks and investment houses and let them put up risky mortgage-backed securities as collateral.

March 16: The Fed provides a $29 billion loan to JPMorgan Chase & Co. as part of its purchase of investment bank Bear Stearns.

July 30: President Bush signs a housing bill including $300 billion in new loan authority for the government to back cheaper mortgages for troubled homeowners.

Sept. 7: The Treasury takes over mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, putting them into a conservatorship and pledging up to $200 billion to back their assets.

Sept. 16: The Fed injects $85 billion into the failing American International Group, one of the world's largest insurance companies.

Sept. 16: The Fed pumps $70 billion more into the nation's financial system to help ease credit stresses.

Sept. 19: The Treasury temporarily guarantees money market funds against losses up to $50 billion.

Oct. 3: President Bush signs the $700 billion economic bailout package. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson says the money will be used to buy distressed mortgage-related securities from banks.

Oct. 6: The Fed increases a short-term loan program, saying it is boosting short-term lending to banks to $150 billion.

Oct. 7: The Fed says it will start buying unsecured short-term debt from companies, and says that up to $1.3 trillion of the debt may qualify for the program.

Oct. 8: The Fed agrees to lend AIG $37.8 billion more, bringing total to about $123 billion.

Oct. 14: The Treasury says it will use $250 billion of the $700 billion bailout to inject capital into the banks, with $125 billion provided to nine of the largest.

Oct. 14: The FDIC says it will temporarily guarantee up to a total of $1.4 trillion in loans between banks.

Oct. 21: The Fed says it will provide up to $540 billion in financing to provide liquidity for money market mutual funds.

Nov. 10: The Treasury and Fed replace the two loans provided to AIG with a $150 billion aid package that includes an infusion of $40 billion from the government's bailout fund.

Nov. 17: Treasury says it has provided $33.6 billion in capital to another 21 banks. So far, the government has invested $158.6 billion in 30 banks.

Sunday: The Treasury says it will invest $20 billion in Citigroup Inc., on top of $25 billion provided Oct. 14. The Treasury, Fed and FDIC also pledge to backstop large losses Citigroup might absorb on $306 billion in real estate-related assets.

Tuesday: The Fed says it will purchase up to $600 billion more in mortgage-related assets and will lend up to $200 billion to the holders of securities backed by various types of consumer loans.