Jul 9, 2015

Committee Chairmen Ask For Ideas

     From a press release:
House Ways and Means Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI), Social Security Subcommittee Chairman Sam Johnson (R-TX), and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) today called on the disability community and other interested stakeholders to bring ideas to the table on how best to address the impending depletion of reserves in the Social Security’s Disability Insurance (DI) Trust Fund. The fund’s depletion has been projected to occur sometime late in 2016, requiring action to prevent across-the-board cuts to beneficiaries of the DI program.
“The Disability Insurance program needs fixing,” Ryan, Johnson, and Hatch said. And while we’re working on solutions, we also want to hear from those outside Congress. Almost all American workers pay for the disability insurance program through their payroll taxes, and they deserve a program that protects those with disabilities, promotes opportunity, and ensures that hard-earned taxpayer dollars are used efficiently and don’t go to fraudsters. We especially want to hear from disability insurance beneficiaries on how we can improve the disability program together.”
The lawmakers are urging the public to take a more active role in developing how to improve the current program and ensure that benefits are there for future generations. Specifically, the lawmakers are soliciting input on:
  1. Ways to make the DI program work better for current and future beneficiaries;
  2. Ways to improve the financial outlook for the DI Trust Fund; and
  3. Ways to promote opportunities for those trying to return to work.
Individuals, researchers, businesses, organizations, and advocacy groups interested in submitting comments should send an email to the following address: ImproveDI@mail.house.gov.


Anonymous said...

The Congressman should just ask the CBO and the Chief Actuary, who conduct regular evaluations of policy proposals:

But first he should explain his opposition to an intrafund transfer, like was done under Reagan. A simple transfer and then lifting the FICA cap solves all the Republican manufactured "crisises", but he can't admit that the "problem" has a simple fix. If the "crisis" were solved there wouldn't be any need to slash benefits, which is always the only goal.

Anonymous said...

well said and Amen

Anonymous said...

ANON 9:53 Excellent post. I can only add that Ryan and Johnson and Hatch know an intrafund transfer has occured from DIB to RIB. Why don't they go after policy changes in RIB? Because the only crises is Republican prospects in the presidential elections and diminished public trust. Bernie Sanders has already provided a gold standard plan included in ANON 9:53 post.

In addition, under the assumptions of the 2014 Trustees Report, the actuaries estimate that raising DI's share of the 6.2 percent payroll tax by 0.5 percentage points in 2015 and 2016, 0.4 percentage points in 2017, and declining amounts through 2024 would equalize the actuarial status of the two trust funds -- putting them both on track to become depleted in 2033 (instead of 2016 for DI and 2034 for OASI)- see

Shell game Ryan.

Anonymous said...

After reading who the chairmen are i'm not sending an email. I am a beneficiary. The only measure i can think of which may be helpful is a law prohibiting termination of a person with a disability.

Also off topic,i remember once reading poms and it stated administrative finality did not pertain to court cases. Do anyone know the exact section or can verify that belief?

Anonymous said...

Does anyone really believe that Ryan, Johnson, or Hatch are interested in what the DI beneficiaries have to say about improving the program? Especially since their definition of improve the program is to prevent, get, and keep people off of the rolls and save money. This runs counter to ideas coming from beneficiaries whose suggestions will most likely cost money, especially in the short run.

Anonymous said...

@ 1:47 Indeed! The fox is asking for advice on how to better protect the chickens in the coop. I expect to hear some interesting input from astro turf organizations shilling for those that want to cut Social Security.

Anonymous said...

@9:53 am:

"But first he should explain his opposition to an intrafund transfer, like was done under Reagan."

The current tea party congressional republicans make me nostalgic for President Reagan.

Anonymous said...

Here's an idea, raise the salary cap or better yet, just remove it and adjust benefits upwards to a small degree for those contributing more

Anonymous said...

Pass the Social Security 2100 Act with a companion bill to separate the RSI and DI Trust Funds from the unified budget(the status until
the mid 1960s),and Social Security would be solvent until 2090. Republicans would vociferously object with their standard complaint that this merely kicks the can down the road. Per a National Academy of Social Insurance survey conducted in 2014, about 80% of the public across the political spectrum support the gradual upward adjustment of the FICA tax rate (1% increase on both employers and employess spread over 25 years)and phasing out the FICA tax cap. In the face of support for an all revenue solution to SSA's future funding shortfall in two decades, Republicans and their think tank acolytes (Third Way, Heritage Foundation, American Enterprise Institute, the Cato{Koch}Institute, et al.)have an uphill battle. By necessity they must manufacture crises replete with scare tactics, like the current hubub over DI, to "reform" (destroy) the program under the guise of saving it.

Resorting to Ryan and his fellow rabid reactionaries for relevant ideas on saving Social Security rivals seeking snake oil salesmen for cures for cancer.

shanta said...
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