Washington, DC - The Association of Mature American Citizens said today that a new bill it has been promoting in Congress to provide a 1% Cost of Living increase in 2016 Social Security and Veterans benefits has been introduced in the House of Representatives.
"It's a bi-partisan initiative sponsored by Representatives Frank Guinta (R-NH) and
Kyrsten Sinema, (D-AZ) and it provides for a 1% COLA increase in checks for seniors and veterans starting in January," according to AMAC president Dan Weber.
Weber issued an urgent appeal to the association's 1.3 million members and the public at large to contact their lawmakers and encourage them to support the Guinta-Sinema legislation [H.R. 4140].
The Social Security Administration announced in October that there would be no Cost of Living benefits increases next year.
It's only the third time in the last 40 years that nearly 70 million Americans will be denied a COLA in FY 2016. The government concluded that due a flat year-to-year Consumer Price Index, a major component of which is the price of gasoline which fell sharply from 2014 to 2015, senior citizens and veterans should be denied a much-needed benefits increase.
"With mounting evidence to suggest senior citizens are largely unaffected by falling gas prices, and with many experts predicting even greater increases in healthcare and food costs, H.R. 4140 offers welcomed relief to cash-strapped seniors and veterans," Weber said.
While the bill will not overturn the no-COLA decision, it will provide senior citizens and veterans with a one-time, 1% payment equal to a 1% Social Security Cost-of-Living Adjustment (COLA). Its sponsors said that the cost of the one-time payment is estimated to be between $9 and $11 billion but will be offset by an equal amount of federal spending cuts.