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H.R. 235, The Social Security Fairness Act of 2009 (299 comments ↓ | 3 wiki edits: view article ↓)

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H.R. 235 would amend title II of the Social Security Act to repeal the Government pension offset and windfall elimination provisions.

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Betty Ritter

March 3, 2009, 12:39pm (report abuse)

I am a widow and my husband paid SS for 40 years. I can\'t collect his SS because I taught in Ct for 30 years..How is this fair when everyne right now is getting Money for not even working..

~ Richard ~

March 3, 2009, 9:59pm (report abuse)

TO: Betty Ritter.

We feel your pain and ask that you back-up 5 postings to what 'BE' said and GET INVOLVED that way. Also, when you logged onto this sight did you notice the "What People Think" graph and did you cast your Aye or Nay?

~ R, 4K2 ~

ray D.

March 4, 2009, 5:16pm (report abuse)

The senate version S484 has been introduced. Senator Lincoln from Arkansas the chairwomen of the sub. comm on social security has signed on as a co-sponser.

Josh Taylor

March 4, 2009, 5:43pm (report abuse)

Time to go and get a job then. Where should work?

We need to eliminate social security to fix the our debts in the Treasury.

George

March 7, 2009, 3:29pm (report abuse)

What we really need to do is privatize Social Security.

Pers

March 11, 2009, 4:56am (report abuse)

While our Senators and Congressmen ignore our pleas for the past 26 plus years to repeal the GPO/WEP, they not only gave theselves a 2.5% raise in 2008, they again

just gave themselves a 10% on March 10, 2009 with the justification that they are denying themselves an automatic cost-of-living pay increase due on Jan. 1. These are the people denying us our social security benefits so we can live in poverty, while they keep giving themselves a raise so they can live in luxury..

Gail

(logged-in user) March 11, 2009, 5:19pm (report abuse)

Just thought I would let you know that I am starting to receive responses from letters sent to my representatives in CA. I received a letter from G. Radonovichs' office today stating that he is in full support of HR 235. These letters are repeats of past years but I will continue to send them until we see some positive action.

Pers

March 11, 2009, 6:15pm (report abuse)

Everyone, I have come to the conclusion that these Senators and Congressmen are are not and will not repeal the GPO/WEP. As Gaill stated regarding responses she received from her representatives, "These letters are repeats of past years but I will continue to send them until we see some positive actions". We have and are receiving the same responses and no action has been taken except to introduce and reintroduce under a different bill number for the past 26 plus years. I have also come to the conclusion that we need to start contacting President Obama, as I have, as he is the only person that I think, will finally see to it that this bill is passed. So please start writing or contacting President Obama regarding the repeal of the GPO/WEP.

Hank

March 12, 2009, 12:05am (report abuse)

Anyone who thinks Obama will get involved is really living in a fantasy world. The WEP and GPO won\'t go away in my lifetime.

Pers

March 12, 2009, 7:18am (report abuse)

Hank, I suggest you do an internet search on

Barack Obama's letter to NEA members. I do not live in a fantasy world, I live in the real world and the reality is gathering sponsors to sponsor the repeal of the GPO/WEP for the last 26 plus years has certainly not worked or gotten anywhere. If something does not work, time and time again, do you keep trying even if you have tried 26 times? I do not think so. Well, we have tried too many times and it certainly does not hurt to try another plan of action.

gonatly

(logged-in user) March 12, 2009, 11:07am (report abuse)

I started contacting the Obama team during the campaign. They knew nothing. There is 1 comment that I know of in the "Citizens' Briefing Book"..a tool to give people the chance to vent-nothing more.Obama hasn't said anything about seniors, other than they shouldn't pay taxes on incomes less than 50K. What a joke..I wish. What happened to John Kerry's support?.. the hearings last year. I called his office-nothing. Barney Frank has ideas on the subject-and the audacity to say something. Maybe we should all email his office?

BE

March 12, 2009, 11:23am (report abuse)

Hank, Although I think you are right in your assessment of Obama, Pers is also correct in trying all avenues on this matter. I have had no good response from Obama's camp personally, but I think we must write, call, etc. everyone we can think of. I have not seen any media coverage on the WEP/GPO. Perhaps this could be a focus. I must admit the attempts I have made to the media have fell on deaf ears.

rd

(logged-in user) March 15, 2009, 3:48pm (report abuse)

This has to be lead by the teachers amd police that it effects. Most people think the government employees are over paid and under worked, but teachers are a different thing. They need to lead the way and people including congressmen will listen.

Don

(logged-in user) April 8, 2009, 2:26pm (report abuse)

My contribution to SS was through 14 years military service so I wasnt going to get very much in SS, but to lose half of it because of a govt career is rediculous. A spouse of a living husband/wife who never worked a day in their life gets twice what I do and if that is fair it is beyond me.

Half of the retirees that depended on this bill being passed have probably already died and in 10 years most of the rest of us will probably do the same so I am sure they can drag it out long enough to solve the problem without doing anything, which they are really good at. I have been retired for 20 years and gotten by so I sure wouldnt want to do anything to stop congress from getting their automatic pay raises. So if my 300 dollars a month will impede their progress toward becoming millionaires they can just keep my share.

JoinIn

April 8, 2009, 3:17pm (report abuse)

See "Part1-Part4" comments in the Senate Bill page. It summarizes many factors involved in the need to eliminate GPO/WEP.

Glenn

(logged-in user) April 8, 2009, 4:02pm (report abuse)

I am a retired police officer. I also worked in the private sector for 18 years, paying into SS. When I was ready to start drawing my SS benefits, I discovered, in 2004, congress, in an effort to "save" SS, came up with GPO & WEP. Their goal was to decrease the amount of benefits being paid by SS. Instead of stopping fraud & payments to illegal aliens, they decided to take "earned" benefits away from "government" employees. They were able to say, "look, we did something to save SS!" Remember, most in congress are lawyers & they are all politicians. Most will say or do ANYTHING to stay in office. The movie,"Liar,Liar" was about a lawyer who couldn't lie for 24 hours...wish that would happen to congress!

sassy

(logged-in user) April 11, 2009, 3:02pm (report abuse)

What does President Obama think about this? Just curious . This is a great Obama website by the way

www.thebarackobamawatch.com

ddc

April 15, 2009, 6:14am (report abuse)

USPS is wanting to downsize. Pay those CSRS employees "their" SS benefits and many seniors could and would retire. Would be no need for further incentives. Just give us what we paid for.

jaspk

April 15, 2009, 8:22am (report abuse)

It also affects those who have earned retirement in other countries. My wife paid in and earned a retirement in the UK. She then came to the US and worked enough to earn a small social security benefit. However that benefit, even though earned, is reduced because she has her UK retirement. Somehow, that doesn't seem fair to me since she was required to pay into both. I hope the nonsense of WEP is repealed.

PGJ

April 18, 2009, 9:04pm (report abuse)

I am happy to inform you that Assembly Member Torlakson of the California State Assembly has introduced Bill Number AJR 10 on March 9, 2009. According to the bill "This measure would request the President and the Congress of the

United States to enact the Social Security Fairness Act of 2009,

which would repeal the Government Pension Offset and the Windfall

Elimination Provision from the Social Security Act." Now contact your State Assembly Members and State Senate Members to introduce a similar bill in your state requesting the President the Congress to enact the Social Security Fairness Act of 2009. Do an internet search on AJR 10 to read more.

..

April 19, 2009, 2:15am (report abuse)

Ah yes, the Peoples Republik of Kalifornia. Better known as the "Left Coast", and for good reason.

8664

April 22, 2009, 10:34pm (report abuse)

I worked and wasn't required to pay into SS. I accept that I shouldn't get the SAME benefit from SS as a person who worked the same amount of time and did pay into SS. Hey, this guy paid into the fund and should get a larger benefit than I............but, if I begin working at another job that requires me to pay into SS, and I invest enough money to qualify for benefits.....don't penalize me. I paid in the same amount if not more than someone else and I get penalized. What is wrong with this picture?

Tom Walsh

April 25, 2009, 2:32pm (report abuse)

As a teacher retiree, I would like to point out that the federal confiscation of about 60 percent of my EARNED Social Security benefit due to the GPO provisions is not only unfair, it is wrong-headed.

In the years before I went into teaching, I was promised a full benefit at retirement for my SS contributions. Punishing me for choosing to become a teacher is certainly unfair.

If the current administration is truly interested in getting more consumer spending - and not consumer debt - they should realize that to restore my Social Security Benefit to what I actually earned, beginning in 1950 would accomplish that result. Believe me, my age cohorts are not likely stuff any added income under the mattress. We are going to spend it. It would be wrong-headed to think otherwise.

Terry Jostes

April 27, 2009, 4:58pm (report abuse)

HR235 or S484 should be passed immediately. It only gives people what they have earned.

PGJ

May 4, 2009, 4:44pm (report abuse)

For those in the state of California, contact your state legislators in your district to vote for the following bill. Hearing/vote will be held on May 6, 2009

http://www.aroundthecapitol.com/Bills/AJR_10

LaRouge

(logged-in user) May 6, 2009, 4:19am (report abuse)

Lisa Murkowski (R-AK); Mark Begich (D-AK); Don Young (R-AK) all support these bills to eliminate/modify the WEP/GPO offset. They represent the great State of Alaska.

Mark

May 8, 2009, 11:52pm (report abuse)

CA teachers (active and retired) follow this website:

http://www.socialsecurityfairness.com/Home_Page.html

Northern CA is finally "Doing Something" about WEP/GPO! A RALLY on 5/30/2009 in Berkeley.

This is an organized, focused movement not interested in sitting on the sidelines wringing their hands....they are ACTING.

All other professional organizations in OTHER states who read this blog, should send them their LINK to include in the FIRST website I have seen that supports REPEAL of WEP/GPO! Connect the disparate professional organizations across the country and create CRITICAL MASS. Reach out and connect your organization.

Act NOW!

Karen Davenport

May 10, 2009, 2:05pm (report abuse)

Those of you who vote against this bill are not going to collect more as a result of denying those of us who have worked in different sectors our fair share. If you don't want police, firemen and teachers to be able to collect SS if they have collected, then who will you call on when people stop entering these professions? Good luck.

rich

May 12, 2009, 2:05pm (report abuse)

Most senators seem in favor of this bill so why is it setting in finance committee. If we were illegal aliens then it would be acted on right away

Rosa

May 14, 2009, 3:58pm (report abuse)

Ok, J.R., time you learned how SS benefits are calculated. Your avg monthly earnings (AIME) are based on your highest 40 years of income. If you worked 10 years paying SS and 30 years paying no SS, guess what?! You get a BIG FAT ZERO for those 30 years. So, you'll be paid a very low monthly average. However, it is only fair you should receive some benefit since you PAID. Now our Govt decides 20 years ago, that even though the monthly benefit reflects zero for each year of non-SS earnings, you will be further penalized for having a pension for which you paid for 30 years. It is patently unfair. The proper calculation of SS monthly benefits already considers the 30 years of ZERO SS-covered income. WHY are pensioners further penalized? Our SS is figured like anyone else's --IT IS BASED ON WHAT WE CONTRIBUTED FOR UP TO 40 YEARS!! Just think how low the average is when 75% is weighted by ZERO dollars! If you still don't understand, at least stop trying to dispense misinformatin.

~ Richard ~

May 15, 2009, 8:32am (report abuse)

Take a look at this site:

http://www.socialsecurityfairness.com/Home_Page.html

What a bold and gutsy approach this woman is taking. The

site is very informative and extremely helpful especially the boiler-plate letters which will help you to GET INVOLVED!.

Mark

May 15, 2009, 7:40pm (report abuse)

Nor Cal teachers are having a Social Security Fairness Rally on May 30th at 11 AM at the Berkeley Community Theatre. Check out this website and duplicate it in your state or professional organization.

http://www.socialsecurityfairness.com/Home_Page.html

Combine efforts across the country to send letters/emails to your Representatives in support of HR 235 an S 484 starting on May 15th.

~ Richard ~

May 18, 2009, 1:08pm (report abuse)

Have you contacted YOUR Members of Congress through the Toll Free #’s of The Capitol Hill Switchboard: 1-877-851-6437, 1-800-828-0498, or 1-800-614-2803?

Did you ask for the office of your Senator or Representative [you needed to dial again for each different one]?

When you asked what the Representative’s position on H.R.235 or the Senator’s position on S.484 is, what were you told?

Then, regardless of whether you got a yea or nay, did you TELL THEM you want that elected official to take the necessary steps to get the bill on to the floor of the House or Senate for debate and vote?

Take a moment to tell us about it with a post, here.

If we all do our part rather than relying on someone else to do it, we will make it happen.

TAKE ACTION - GET INVOLVED!

~ Richard ~

May 18, 2009, 1:15pm (report abuse)

I am disgusted that, until now, AARP has chosen to not take a stand on these issues. So, I sent a Fax to the new CEO as follows:

~ R ~ [continued]

May 18, 2009, 1:17pm (report abuse)

A. Barry Rand, CEO

AARP National Office

601 E. Street NW,

Washington, DC 20049

Fax #: 1-202-434-7710

Dear Mr. Rand;

As you know, two bills have recently been presented to our legislators, one to the House (H.R. 235) and one to the Senate (S.484). These bills, if passed, would repeal two unjust laws that have financially disadvantaged teachers for decades. The Windfall Elimination and the Government Pension Offset Provisions are discriminatory towards teachers.

They dictate that teachers may not collect social security from deceased spouses, or collect social security at levels other participants in the system do — even when they paid into social security from another job prior to, or during their teaching career. These discriminatory laws also impact the pool of qualified people who may enter teaching; they discourage people from entering teaching because many would lose previously earned social security.

~ R ~ [ending]

May 18, 2009, 1:18pm (report abuse)

The involvement of AARP is vital to repealing these provisions that penalize educators and public service employees in fifteen states. For that reason, there is no justification for entangling the straightforward matter of repealing these unfair offsets with any other Social Security issues.

AARP has an obligation to help make sure no educator or public sector employee loses benefits they or their spouses have earned. Please let me know specifically what you are doing to achieve the long-overdue elimination of the GPO and WEP.

Cordially,

[my signature]

vmiscione@cityoforange.org

May 22, 2009, 1:11pm (report abuse)

I worked in private industry .

from the time I was 18 years old until 42 when I went to work for

City government. My pension wih the City will in no way cover all my expenses and my social security

was totaled into the equation as part of my retirement. I put into the system all those years with the promise that I would receive my

benefits. Presently my Social Security is supposed to be $800 per month with the windfall tax I will only receive $325. You can hardly by groceries with that for one month. The windfall tax amounts to theivery for those of us who have put into both systems.

PJG

May 22, 2009, 3:21pm (report abuse)

Since bills related to money must start in the House of Representatives, please write your Congressman to sponsor H.R.235, more importantly those assigned to the Committee on Social Security. Remember, if these members vote no, the Bill is killed and will not be sent to the full House of Representatives. Worse, the committee may not even consider it at all preventing it from moving forward. So please do your part and if these members represent your state and district, it is up to you to get them to sponsor this bill. Representative will only entertain any actions and comments from their constituents. As you all can see, we still have a long way to go to have the committee to even consider this bill for a vote. This year is almost half over and I do not really want to have this bill reintroduced next year as the Social Security Fairness Act of 2010. Due to lack of space, please see the following comment for the list of sponsors and nonsponsors are preceded by asterisks.

PJG

May 22, 2009, 3:25pm (report abuse)

Members of the 111th Congress

Democrats

**John S. Tanner, TN Chairman

**Earl Pomeroy, ND

Allyson Y. Schwartz, PA

**Xavier Becerra, CA

Lloyd Doggett, TX

**Ron Kind, WI

**Joseph Crowley, NY

Linda T. Sanchez, CA

John A. Yarmuth, KY

Repoublicans

** Sam Johnson, TX

**Kevin Brady, TX

Pat Tiberi, OH

Ginny Brown-Waite, FL

**Dave G. Reichert, WA

Names preceded by asterisks are NOT SPONSORS of H.R.235

~ Richard ~

May 23, 2009, 12:30pm (report abuse)

It's underwhelming to see the number of folks that have responded to the May 18, 2009, 1:08pm post above and taken a moment to tell us about the results of their contacts. Relying on others to do it, apparently.

BE

May 24, 2009, 3:31pm (report abuse)

Texans, don't be fooled by Sen. Hutchison & Cornyn when they say that 235 & 484 should be addressed by comprehensive soc.sec. reform.That just translates to "they don't give a damn about the present plight of our retirees"Call them and ask Them to get on board 484 now. I let my aarp membership go because of this very matter ~Richard~. If more people do the same it may have an effect. I guess the House Ways and means committee are too busy to answer my requests for why 235 still languishes in committee! I do hope all the other contributors to this site are bombarding their reps. It's the only way to get things moving.

CRT

May 27, 2009, 8:47am (report abuse)

BE, you do realize that others are telling the legislators that there is no need to change the current program, don't you? As far as I can see, what is in place now is fair and should not be changed.

~ Richard ~

May 27, 2009, 12:02pm (report abuse)

To: CRT (or is it really J.R). Review Rosa's May 14, 2009, 3:58pm post above. What you call fare are double penalties - plain & simple.

CRT

May 27, 2009, 3:21pm (report abuse)

Refer to the webpage below to see where Rosa goes astray in her posting. She is in error as to the calculations.

http://www.socialsecurity.gov/policy/docs/statcomps/supplement/2008/apnd.pdf

And it does not matter how you look at it, the fact remains that those who only worked a few years under social security while also working for a non-covered pension would receive an unfair windfall because of how the benefit is front-loaded for low earners. It will never get through to those who are whining about the offset that they are no being penalized.

PGJ

May 28, 2009, 12:47pm (report abuse)

Richard, I think CRT is really a Congressman and a Republican from the State of Texas. The two republicans sitting on the subcommittee on Social Security are Kevin Brady and Sam Johnson. These two are opposed to the repeal of the GPO/WEP and have not and will not cosponsor H.R.235 as in past similar bills presented, yet they continue to be appointed to the committee that will determine if these bills are moved out of the committee and onto the floor for a vote.. People affected by the GPO/WEP in the state of Texas whose district is represented by Brady and Johnson should do everything in their power to never have these two reelected for office, Remember,

members of Congress receive an UNREDUCED ANNUITY AT AGE 50 WITH 20 YEARS SERVICE OR AT ANY AGE WITH 25 YEARS OF SERVICE WITH A SALARY IN THE HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS A YEAR. Public servants on the other hand earn much much less and only get a percentage of their salary upon retirement.

continued....plase see next comment.

PJG

May 28, 2009, 12:49pm (report abuse)

Continuation....

I think members of Congress know by now that for them to introduce and reintroduce this bill and by cosponsoring it is enough to get our votes and keep them in office by giving us false hopes. I'm sure there are those who are sincere, but I am sure there are also those who just want our votes. My senator is the one who introduced S. 484 and my Congressman is a cosponsor of H.R. 235. Based on their responses on letters I have written them, they both sound sincere in having these bills passed.

~ Richard ~

May 28, 2009, 3:24pm (report abuse)

re: CRT is really a Congressman

Really! Interesting.

The link CRT referred to does'nt exist. The error states:

•If you have reached this page by following a link on another Web site, please notify the owner of the Web site, not Social Security.

Steve Olsen

May 30, 2009, 6:18pm (report abuse)

We have WRITTEN to both CA Senators and our neighboring Congress Members, for five years. We get the same answer every time. There are supporters. We need to get the others on the MOVE.

We write notes like this:

" Honorable Senator Feinstein:

We are BOTH registered voters in the East Bay Area. We want Congress to know that we are outraged that teachers, police officers, firefighters, and professional support staff across the country have their Social Security benefits reduced or eliminated upon retirement by the UNFAIR provisions of the Windfall Elimination Provisions and the Government Pension Offsets.

Federal law currently has two provisions that negatively impact our nation's educators (at least fifteen states), police and firefighters:

- The Windfall Elimination Provision: ...

- The Government Pension Offset: ... penalizes “little old school teachers” when they outlive their spouse. We urge Congress to pass HR 235 / SB 484 to repeal ...

TerryJostes

(logged-in user) June 1, 2009, 4:45pm (report abuse)

Doing away with WEP will only give us the Social Security benefits we deserve and have contributed to. We deserve at least that much.

chester201

June 2, 2009, 3:13pm (report abuse)

Anyone who votes against this bill is no better than Bernard Maddoff. You want everything for yourself. Those of us who want this bill to pass, only want what we have contributed. Don't you want your share? What if you were told you can't take out what you put it? You'd feel that it was unfair, too. You are not going to get more by denying us our share. The government, and government officials will get more. Maybe people on welfare will get more. Please give the money earned and deducted back to the hard working Americans who have contributed to the Social Security fund.

John R.

June 10, 2009, 8:39am (report abuse)

I went here to read what CRT was talking about. Perhaps others don;t have basic understanding of how the web works.

www.socialsecurity.gov/policy/docs/statcomps/supplement/2008/apnd.pdf

CRT

June 10, 2009, 11:13am (report abuse)

chester201,

"Please give the money earned and deducted back to the hard working Americans who have contributed to the Social Security fund."

Here's a thought - ask the social security folks to give you back what you paid in but no more than that. What a shock - you really didn't pay in very much so what you get back that way wouldn't be much. Pee and moan, whine, whine, whine.

The WEP is fair and should remain in effect forever.

PGJ

June 15, 2009, 3:02am (report abuse)

In case many of you have not read Kevin Brady's excuse as to why he cannot support the repeal of the GPO/WEP please access website cited below. According to him "Although repealing the Government Pension Offset of 2/3 would be very helpful to teachers, it would discriminate against all other widows in America who face a 100% offset – treating them as second class-citizens within Social Security. Out of fairness, I can not support this". Does Kevin Brady know that the GPO is the reason why government and public employees face a 100% offset and that is the reason why it should be repealed? That this the more reason why he should support the repeal of the GPO, because it is 100% offset. He obviously does not know what he is talking about yet he continues to serve in the committee on SS and doing a disservice rather than service to retired government and public service employees. Access www.house.gov/brady/widow_benefits.htm where Brady's dumb explanation is posted.

~ R ~

June 15, 2009, 2:07pm (report abuse)

Brady's understanding of the issue is pathetic - absolutely pathetic.

dlw

June 16, 2009, 10:52pm (report abuse)

I support the passage H.R. 235 & S. 484 because my earned $$$$ were earned prior to the 2nd company I worked for, but was jeopardized because company #2 does not support S.S. on the account of a government enactment of the railroad bill. My question to all those opposed to my fair share is: reduce your SS because you are in a 401k program or other type of retirement program that you will use for your retirement $$$$. I wonder how you would feel if your SS $$$ were lowered by the amount contributed to any of these programs. If you earned your quarters or years plus contributions you should be entitled to all you have contributed. Charity starts at home so to all those elected officials America is getting mad at your behavior. Lets not give our hard earned $$$$ of SS to individuals who have not earned or worked for it. I intend to send to President Obama @ www.thebarackobamawatch.com and Mr. A. Barry Rand of AARP. Let us supporter do the same

srk

(logged-in user) June 20, 2009, 3:48pm (report abuse)

JR and CRT do not seem to grasp the real issue. I am not asking for a free ride in retirement, or for anything I haven't earned. I put into Social Security for 22 years. I have contributed to CalSTRS (teacher retirement)for 10 years, and will continue to do so until I am 60. I would be content if I got my SS retirement benefit and CalSTRS, which together would add up to an income of about $3000 per month, with no medical package. My husband would receive about $3,000 a month along with a small medical coverage ammount of $500 per month (which wouldn't cover our health care costs, but would help a lot). I have a hidden disability for which I could receive disability pay, but as long as it doesn't interfere with my teaching, I choose to continue to work. What I resent is, whatever I receive from CalSTRS will be deducted from my SS retirement, along with losing my husband's SS surviror benefit. continue on next entry

srk

(logged-in user) June 20, 2009, 3:56pm (report abuse)

So, I have to decide whether to take my teacher retirement, or SS. Why should I have to choose? I put into both systems, and will never work enough years to receive the full teacher retirement benefit. JR, I believe, said that teacher retirement is heavily front loaded. I don't know where he gets that idea. After teaching for 15 years, I will be entitled to $1500 a month. Teachers who retire with 32 years of service (I will have 37 years of work time, but not in teaching) receive nearly $6000 a month as their retirement. My teaching job takes 65 to 80 hours a week. So what JR and CRT are saying is that I should settle for half of a retirement. I am thankful that my husband did not choose to go into teaching as a second career. We would be in a world of hurt then. I look at my extra hours that I put in, as pro bono work; my way of serving the community.

continue..almost done!

srk

(logged-in user) June 20, 2009, 3:56pm (report abuse)

What are JR and CRT doing as far as volunteer work or contributions to society other than giving my entitlements to illegal immigrants and women who chose to stay out of the workforce for their entire lives, and now rely on their husbands' income to survive?

Amy Hansen

June 20, 2009, 8:41pm (report abuse)

Many of us came to teaching as a second career. We accepted lower pay for providing a societal "good" and our "reward", has been to lose the contributions we have made while in the private sector. This is unfair.

I urge support of HR 235.

CRT

June 21, 2009, 7:40am (report abuse)

srk,

I grasp the issue quite well. I don't think you do. The offset is in place because ot the way the calculation of benefits is front-loaded. If you would take the time to become familiar with that you might better understand. It certainly sounds llike you don't really have any idea how it really works.

As to what I am doing to help society - I spend 25 hours each and every week at a homless shelter doing anything I can to keep it running. What is it that you do for society, other than complain how unfairly you are being treated.

Amy Hansen

You can moan all you want about "lower pay" but that doesn't wash. Take a real look at what the average pay is and then look at what is really required of teachers versus the private sector for that pay. TEachers gave used the "we are underpaid" mantra for far too long. You are not underpaid. You may be underemployed, but certainly not underpaid.

jwh

June 25, 2009, 1:21pm (report abuse)

CRT-I hope you enjoy telling others what is fair and what is right when common sense is all that is needed. I work 32 years for the government and 19 in private business. I know I should not collect for the 32 years and understood that, but why am I and those others on this site penalized for work unrelated to the WEP law and in which we paid SS.

John Kerry and many others in Congress see the injustice of this law. At my age it would not do be a big deal to correct this obvious error, but to most younger than me it means getting what they deserve and making life a little easier. I am not arguing what the law says, just that it is unfair and needs correcting. CRT whatever your objective please keep in mind many of these retirees are really hurting and only want what is theirs.

pb2

June 25, 2009, 3:07pm (report abuse)

Have any of you who think the WEP/GPO is fair actually worked as a teacher/government employee? I have paid SS and retired from government work, and even some of my pension was cut because I had paid into Social Security (which I can't receive). How is that fair?

CRT

June 25, 2009, 3:09pm (report abuse)

jwh,

And that is exactly what they are getting - what they deserve. The only real way to end it all is to change the entire formula for social security and end the front-loaded calculation that helps the lifelong low wage earning individuals, who really need the help. But that won't happen because it would apply to everyone and the ones who now whine about the WEP would just start crying about the lower outcome of the new formula.

jwh

July 1, 2009, 3:28pm (report abuse)

CRT,

Well it only takes common sense to see that people here only want what is fair. They are not asking for a handout, only to receive SS benefits they rightly deserve. Most of them are like me-make under $40,000 a year and live from paycheck to paycheck. I don't know your situation, but I pray you always recieve what you deserve.

mark c

July 2, 2009, 12:43am (report abuse)

I'm 39 years old. I worked for 23 years in the US army (acive 4 years only) but currently doing reserves have 5 years to retire. I have many years working in all kinds of places about 18 years. I just got my first teaching job, now I am about to lose all my social security benefits from all those years??????????? and you guys want more teachers??????????

get serious here, it's called the fair act for a reason. I earned all that money before I became a teacher which is in the thousands, this is not fair. I can' believe some of you all would vote it down thats just pathetic

Mellen

(logged-in user) July 3, 2009, 9:06pm (report abuse)

I am one of the many who worked and paid into SS, then became a teacher and now cannot draw my SS.

Now, at age 81, I am still teaching part time because I cannot live on my pension.

I have written to everyone in Congress who has even a remote connection to S S to pass HR235 and S484. President Obama was a sponsor of a similar bill when he was a senator and has said he will sign the bill. WRITE to Congressman RANGEL (chair of Ways and Means) and to your senators to get the bills out of committee.

CRT

July 4, 2009, 9:23am (report abuse)

mark c,

Your story just doesn't add up. 39 years old with 23 years in the army? Come on get real.

The act can be called anything you want it is still wrong.

KarenG

(logged-in user) July 5, 2009, 8:01pm (report abuse)

I'm glad people are finally figuring this out. When I first learned of the WEP and the GPO, I didn't believe they could be true. This was in 1986, when I went to work in California public schools after 23 years of SS qualifying work in another state. I contacted professional organizations to get support for my concerns, and it seemed nobody else believed it either. One problem with the teacher component is that only 14 states have this problem, as all other states' teachers have paid into SS all along. The National Education Association was NO HELP at that time. I am now retired, and penalized, but still hoping for a remedy. Let's get this legislation passed.

MaryW

July 10, 2009, 2:07pm (report abuse)

Both my husband and I have devoted the majority of our working careers to not-for-profit organizations that provide services and support to our community, state and nation.

HOWEVER, we have also both worked throughout the years in jobs in which we had to contribute to Soc. Sec. AND have both earned more than enough "credits" to be eligible to receive Social Security. Each year, like anyone else who does or has contributed to Social Security, we get a statement projecting what our expected monthly Social Security payment will be once we put in our claim.

I agree with so many before us that just because we have worked for so many years in state or municipal jobs (classicly low-paying comparatively) and have not had to pay into Social Security for that time, we shoud STILL be entitled to receive the benefit that Social Security says we have earned, were it not for WEP.

The WEP was and is patently unjust.

JoeY

(logged-in user) July 12, 2009, 1:51pm (report abuse)

It's still in commettie, and like in the past will die there. They have no incentive to pass this.

JK

July 13, 2009, 2:37pm (report abuse)

It will die in committee unless each of us does the following:

EMAIL President Obama at www.whitehouse.gov.

“REPEAL the WEP/GPO” in the subject line!

CALL Speaker Pelosi at her California office 415-556-4862.

FAX Senate Majority Leader Reid at 202-224-7327.

Contact all in congress.

We need to let our voices be heard. Just complaining on this page will not get anything done

.

July 14, 2009, 12:21am (report abuse)

Sorry JK, but none of that will have the effect you want. At some point all of you will finally understand that there is no interest in changing the WEP/GPO. It is what it is and they like it that way.

PGJ

July 15, 2009, 3:13pm (report abuse)

As you may or may not know President Obama has been very vocal about overhauling the nation's healthcare system. He warned lawmakers where he once served that they are often tempted to shunt aside politically sensitive issues. As quoted in his speech:

"For those who say, 'Well, you know what, this is something that is very complicated, so we shouldn't rush into it,' that's what happens in Congress all the time," Obama said. "They have hearings, they write white papers, and then suddenly the lobbyists and the special interests start going at it. And next thing you know, another 10 years has gone by, and we still haven't done anything."

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PGJ

July 15, 2009, 3:14pm (report abuse)

Above is the same scenario regarding bills to Repeal the GPO/WEP which has been going on for the last 27 plus years and counting. President Obama is also quoted as saying:

"In order to make it happen, I'm going to need ordinary Americans to stand up and say now's the time," Obama said at a town hall meeting at Northern Virginia Community College in the Washington suburb of Annandale, Va. "If Congress thinks that the American people don't want to see change, frankly the lobbyists and the special interests will end up winning the day."

I am happy to report that today, July 15, 2009, "Members of the Senate Health Committee approved a sweeping health-care reform bill on Wednesday, taking a step toward President Barack Obama's goal of covering the uninsured and cutting costs for care."

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PGJ

July 15, 2009, 3:17pm (report abuse)

So everyone, now is the time to stand up and say to President Obama and members of the Social Security Committee, as in President Obama's words, "To stand up and say now's the time" and " Not let Congress put off action on this top legislative priority.".

To read more about President Obama's town hall meeting please do an internet search on "Obama urges public to demand healthcare reform

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...

July 15, 2009, 7:13pm (report abuse)

Pipedream!

PGJ

July 15, 2009, 10:51pm (report abuse)

To ...

Maybe nearly impossible to achieve, but not impossible!!!

JK

July 16, 2009, 9:12pm (report abuse)

If you want something to be done. Here is the list of committee members.

Contact them.

Subcommittee on Social Security

Subcommittee Home | Members | Jurisdiction | Hearings | Legislation

Members of the 111th Congress

Democrats Republicans

John S. Tanner, TN Chairman

Earl Pomeroy, ND

Allyson Y. Schwartz, PA

Xavier Becerra, CA

Lloyd Doggett, TX

Ron Kind, WI

Joseph Crowley, NY

Linda T. Sanchez, CA

John A. Yarmuth, KY

Sam Johnson, TX

Kevin Brady, TX

Pat Tiberi, OH

Ginny Brown-Waite, FL

Dave G. Reichert, WA

CDB

July 19, 2009, 9:15am (report abuse)

Y'all are just gonna get wet - from peeing against the wind. Ain't nobody gives a damn for this stuff in Washington.

Lynn

July 21, 2009, 6:26pm (report abuse)

I have written my congressman and our new President and am waiting for a response. More than 900,000 people are affected by this. The bill was passed in 1983. Someone told me after so many people die, they will probably change the policy. It has been 27 years. Most of us rely on SS as a part of our total retirement package. I am not a teacher,firefighter, or police person and my SS was cut about 66%. I had 27 years with government instead of 30. It is true that the senators and congressmen are not affected by this Windfall act and I am not sure why. Shouldn't the laws apply to all of us? My retirement check from the government is small $18 or less. I need my fair share of Social Security that I did pay in and that I earned. I will contact CNN or dateline etc. soon and try to expose this terrible injustice, for any injustice is a form of abuse. Even if we forgave the past and they would restore our rightful amount tomorrow, we would be dancing in the streets. Will you join me?

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