A Congressional hearing on the Social Security WEP and GPO has been scheduled for this coming Tuesday, April 16, at 3:00 PM on Capitol Hill.

The hearing does not appear to be focused on any specific proposal to either repeal or reform the two federal laws. Instead, the hearing announcement by Ways and Means Chairman Jason Smith (R-MO) and Social Security Subcommittee Chairman Drew Ferguson (R-GA) states that the hearing will focus on the following: “to examine Social Security’s Windfall Elimination Provision and Government Pension Offset, their intended purpose, shortcomings, and alternatives.”

The hearing will be streamed live online at https://waysandmeans.house.gov. The webcast will not be available until the hearing starts. House Ways and Means also maintains a YouTube channel that can be accessed here.

Our Association will provide members with an analysis of the hearing, including key takeaways in next Friday’s weekly update – including what we believe to be next steps. No decisions will be reached by the Committee on Tuesday, nor are they likely to take action on any specific bill at that time.

Working together with our partners the Texas Retired Teachers Association (TRTA) and the Association of Texas Professional Educators (ATPE) we have met directly with the Majority and Minority staff within the Ways and Means Committee to gain further insight into the focus of the hearing.

While Committee rules prohibit the release of the witness list prior to the day of the hearing, we have been provided a general overview of the hearing’s intent and focus. We also believe that the witnesses will likely include officials from the Social Security Administration and others who will testify from an academic point of view.

Following the hearing in Baton Rouge last November, which exclusively focused on the impact of WEP and GPO on public retirees, Tuesday’s hearing will likely focus on the technical aspects of the two laws – how benefits are calculated, specifically which retirees are impacted, historical origins, and, as the notice states, “alternatives”.

By “alternatives”, we take the term to be an all-encompassing reference to the various repeal and reform proposals that have been filed in recent years. To be clear we believe this hearing, like the field hearing in November, appears to be designed as an information gathering and educational session.

While we would much prefer for a bill to be marked up and brought to the House floor for a vote, the fact that this hearing is the 2nd on the topic of WEP/GPO within five months demonstrates the importance of the issue. It also shows the power of relentless advocacy. Congress cannot ignore this problem and hope that it simply goes away. They must find a workable solution.
The following is a link to the original Ways and Means hearing notice, which includes instructions on the submission of written testimony.

Please enjoy the weekend, as well as Marathon Monday – AKA Patriot’s Day!

Most sincerely,


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