Articles about Social Security that may be useful to Massachusetts retirees
- During the first months of Congress’ 108th session, legislation has
been introduced to outright repeal or otherwise reform Social
Security’s Government Pension Offset (GPO) and Windfall Elimination
Provision (WEP). “Many familiar names appear among those who have filed
relief bills,” comments Association Legislative Chairman Bill Hill.
- Relief Bills Introduced In Congress - When it comes to relief from Social Security's Government Pension
Offset (GPO) and Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP), the Association
will do whatever it can to push this much needed legislation through
the Congress. Last year, we enlisted the help of our Maine and Vermont
members, and now we've turned to our Florida membership.Earlier
this year, several hundred members, living in the Ft. Lauderdale/
Pompano Beach area, met with Association officials. Ft Lauderdale is
also represented by Congressman Clay Shaw, Jr. who has served as
chairman of the Social Security Subcommittee – a critical committee to
any earlier success toward relief.
- When the new Congress convenes its 108th Session this January,
legislation, repealing or otherwise providing relief from Social
Security's Government Pension Offset (GPO) and Windfall Elimination
Provision (WEP), will again be introduced. According to Legislative
Chairman Bill Hill, "We expect that support for GPO and WEP relief
bills will be stronger than ever as the number of retirees and
employees hurt by these federal laws continues to grow - not only here
in Massachusetts but also in another 26 states.
- Out-of-State Members Also Take Action - As the Congress approaches the end of its current (107th) session,
the Association's legislative team has intensified its effort to prompt
congressional action now on relief from Social Security's Windfall
Elimination Provision (WEP) and Government Pension Offset (GPO).
- How They Originated And Work Today - For the benefit of our newer members (and perhaps as a refresher for
all of us) here's an explanation of the Government Pension Offset (GPO)
and Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP), in a nutshell. First, let's
take a look at how these laws originated.
- When the Congress returns from summer recess this month (September)
and draws closer to the end of this year and its 107th Session, time
becomes critical in terms of relief from Social Security's Government
Pension Offset (GPO) and Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP).
"Unfortunately time - and the lack of it - is becoming the enemy when
it comes to these issues," comments Legislative Chairman Bill Hill."After
they resume work this Fall, all of the representatives and those
senators, facing re-election in November, will be anxious to get back
home and campaign. And after the elections, there isn't much time
before the year ends and so does the session."
- For the first time, federal legislation that would provide relief
from the onerous Windfall Elimination Provisions (WEP) of the Social
Security law, has garnered the support of a majority in the US House of
Representatives. H.R. 1073, introduced by Congressman Barney Frank of
Newton, now has 219 sponsors out of 435 representatives.
- With November elections fast approaching, the 107th Congress is
feeling added pressure to finally enact relief from the Government
Pension Offset (GPO) and Windfall Laws in 2002. (For a quick overview
of these laws, check out our "GPO And WEP Explained: In A Nutshell"
article from the September 2001 Voice.) Mindful of this, the
Association, with the other coalition members in CARE (Coalition to
Assure Retirement Equity), have shifted into high gear to achieve one
objective over the next few months - GPO and WEP relief becoming law.
MARCH 2002 - Lussier Urges Caution - It's a huge win," said Tom Lussier, executive director of the Coalition to Preserve Retirement Security.
- Renewed Push This Year For House Vote - Social Security reform has understandably been placed on the
backburner by the 107th Congress, including efforts to provide relief
from the Government Pension Offset (GPO) and Windfall Elimination
Provision (WEP). "With the war and recession at the forefront, CARE
(Coalition to Assure Retirement Equity) has to step back, for now, from
the aggressive strategy it intended to employ before September 11,
regarding the offset and windfall, laws," reports Legislative Chairman