Social Security Disability

A few bumps for the economy
Social Security Disability

A few bumps for the economy

That hardly would have been remarkable during the Reagan and Clinton years — growth averaged 3.4 percent.
Unemployment stands at about 4.1 percent — well below the sustainable level of 4.6 percent, as computed by economists who worry about such things.
Wages are rising about 2.9 percent a year but factoring in productivity growth, that translates into long-term inflation of less than the Fed’s target of 2 percent.
A further run-up in stock and property prices could worry Fed policymakers that a bubble may burst.
Those combine to keep pushing up land values, rents and sustainable housing prices.
You guessed it, housing prices.
It really doesn’t matter what the Fed does, as long as it does not act precipitously, dramatically drive up mortgage rates and put the skids on the housing market.
Land values and housing prices are going to rise because those are needed to encourage building adequate to the pace of new household formation.
I doubt he is much interested in that and consequently, we can look forward to a period of moderate inflation, the Fed gradually raising interest rates and the stock market accommodating both.
The Washington Times is switching its third-party commenting system from Disqus to Spot.IM.

250,000 Michigan jobs may be gone forever, despite economic rebound
Social Security Disability

250,000 Michigan jobs may be gone forever, despite economic rebound

Judging by the past few years, Michigan’s economy has come roaring back from the Great Recession.
But many others, at least 60,000 or so in recent years, found themselves too young to retire but no longer able to work because of injuries on the job or other health concerns and now live on Social Security disability payments.
Among them: Theresa Peete of Detroit served as a custodial worker for Detroit Public Schools for 27 years.
When she got injured on the job, the cumulation of years of handling heavy loads without proper equipment, she eventually had to go on Social Security disability.
But U-M’s Grimes said that without boosting talent or the appeal of cities or other areas that need improvement, Michigan will have to accept its status as a less powerful economic player than in past years while other states move past it.
But I don’t think there’s any way we can ever get back to 2000.” Michigan’s decades-long economic challenge remains: Diversifying its economy to position the state for faster growth.
The state’s construction industry employed a little more than 200,000 workers at that time.
As of the end of 2017, that sector accounted for 675,000 Michigan jobs, fully a third more than the 502,100 workers in that sector back in 2000.
So what should Michigan do?
Mostly, though, a range of leaders and economists talk about talent.

Social Security Collaborates with America Saves Week
Social Security Disability

Social Security Collaborates with America Saves Week

Each year, American Savings Education Council and America Saves coordinate America Saves Week.
For years, Social Security has collaborated with America Saves Week to promote our shared mission of helping millions of people prepare for their future.
This year, the week is celebrated from February 26 through March 3.
Knowing this, it’s never too early to start planning for your future.
Savers with a plan are twice as likely to save successfully.
Pledge to save for America Saves Week.
Social Security’s “People Like Me” website has tailor-made information for preparing for your future.
Our richly diverse country is made up of countless backgrounds, ethnicities, and nationalities, yet we all want the same thing — a secure future.
You can see many of the diverse people we serve.
Younger people need to know that the earlier you start saving, the more your money can grow.

Seminars offer look at how the law works in ‘real world’
Social Security Disability

Seminars offer look at how the law works in ‘real world’

An ongoing, potentially dangerous problem with a neighbor’s dog.
Opening a small business.
Want to learn more about those often-complex issues and much more, from the First Amendment to tenant disputes?
The annual seminars are taught by local attorneys and judges and offer an overview of general legal concepts.
Classes run from 6 to 8 p.m. on eight consecutive Thursdays at the Moore Justice Center’s law library, 2825 Judge Fran Jamieson Way, Viera.
All seminars — with no tests or quizzes — are free.
; and WMEL Radio AM 1300.
More: Titusville attorney earns state honor for pro bono work SCCLS was founded in 2010 by Titusville attorney Brigitta “Britta” Hawkins.
She earned the Florida Bar President’s Pro Bono Service Award for 2017 for the 18th Judicial Circuit, which includes Brevard and Seminole counties.
From deciphering divorce proceedings to learning how what happens in Congress can affect daily life, “there’s a lot citizens don’t think about as they lead busy lives in the real world,” she said That’s what moved her to found the community-centered look at the law, Hawkins said.

Don’t give poor Iowans another hurdle in getting health care
Social Security Disability

Don’t give poor Iowans another hurdle in getting health care

Now Iowa wants to take advantage of introducing one more impediment to poor Iowans getting health insurance through the Medicaid program.
Senate File 2158 would enable the state to impose work requirements as a condition for coverage [“Medicaid recipients told: Work for it”, Feb. 15].
Does Rep. Tom Greene, sponsor of the legislation, know that for an adult without children to qualify for Medicaid benefits, he or she must meet the Social Security disability requirements?
And that this finding, per se, means that the person is unable to work?
Of course it is inconsistent for the Trump administration to even allow states to impose such requirements.
But, no surprise that the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing in this administration.
I agree with your editorial that Medicaid insurance actually may enable otherwise “disabled persons” to work, which is a benefit both to the individual and to society.
— Sister Mary Rehmann, Davenport

Waiting In Denver
Social Security Disability

Waiting In Denver

From KUSA in Denver: Americans with legitimate disability claims are routinely denied benefits under the Social Security Disability Insurance program, then find themselves trapped waiting months, even years, to get a decision on an appeal … [W]hile more than 1 million people wait for their appeals to be heard nationwide, many lose their savings or retirement funds, others their homes, sometimes ending up on the streets.
Thousands have died while waiting for a hearing, according to the Office of the Inspector General.
“It’s this major injustice,” said Denver disability attorney, Will Viner.
“What has happened with the increase in the backlog is people are losing their house, unable to pay for food and shelter.
In the past year we have had nine clients pass away.”… And the delays are getting worse.
In Denver for example, the average wait time to come before a judge was 18 months in January 2018.
In the same month of 2014, the wait was 11.5 months.

I love the graphic that someone did for KUSA.
Good work.

Pavlich: The claim Trump let the mentally ill get guns is a lie
Social Security Disability

Pavlich: The claim Trump let the mentally ill get guns is a lie

President Trump simply reversed an Obama-era policy that stripped the Second Amendment rights from Social Security recipients without due process.
Let’s review.
In 2015 and 2016, the Obama administration implemented a series of policies that deemed those needing a representative payee through the Social Security Administration and Veterans Affairs “mentally unfit.” As a result, millions of individuals became ineligible to purchase a firearm.
These so-called mentally unfit individuals were then entered into the National Instant Criminal Background Check System as ineligible to purchase a firearm without due process.
“In December 2016, the SSA promulgated a final rule that would require the names of all Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefit recipients — who, because of a mental impairment, use a representative payee to help manage their benefits – be submitted to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), which is used during gun purchases,” the ACLU wrote in a letter to senators last year.
There is no data to support a connection between the need for a representative payee to manage one’s Social Security disability benefits and a propensity toward gun violence,” the letter continued.
Last year, the House and Senate voted to bar the Social Security Administration from engaging in the practice of entering individuals seeking monetary guidance into the background check system as mentally unfit, reversing the Obama administration policy.
“Once the VA determines that a veteran requires a fiduciary to administer benefit payments, the VA reports that veteran to the gun ban list, consequently denying his or her right to possess and own firearms,” Grassley wrote.
“Veterans are losing their Second Amendment rights because they have someone managing their checkbook,” Grassley wrote in a letter to President Trump earlier this month.
Trump did not reverse a policy that allows the mentally ill to purchase firearms as reporters, media pundits and anti-Second Amendment activists have recklessly claimed.

The Trump budget’s crushing cruelty
Social Security Disability

The Trump budget’s crushing cruelty

House Democrats are slamming President Donald Trump’s proposed FY 2019 Budget, as well as his infrastructure proposal, with one Democrat saying “the American people got a pretty nasty valentine.”
(Feb. 14) AP On Monday, President Donald Trump released his proposed budget for 2019.
And the American people understand it,” Vermont’s independent senator, Bernie Sanders, said, railing against Charles and David Koch, the two billionaire industrialist brothers who have poured hundreds of millions of dollars into U.S. elections in order to promote their far-right agenda.
This is not a budget, as candidate Donald Trump talked about, that takes on the political establishment.
She explained on the “Democracy Now!” news hour: “Strike one was to actually transfer $1.3 trillion in wealth from working people and the poor to the wealthiest through the GOP tax scam.
To their credit, they are finally saying, in this budget, that those GOP tax cuts don’t pay for themselves, because they’re projecting these enormous deficits as a result of the tax cuts.
Strike two is that they’re essentially going to balloon the deficit, $7 trillion over 10 years, a trillion dollars next year alone.
A spending bill, passed with bipartisan support Feb. 9 in order to avoid a government shutdown, increased military spending, a Trump priority, as well as spending in domestic programs, which the Democrats wanted.
It also raised federal borrowing limits and spending caps.
Of course, these are the same people who said Trump had no chance of being elected.

Let’s not let it be another missed opportunity
Social Security Disability

Let’s not let it be another missed opportunity

The Baltimore Sun: It has happened again.
A young man enters his former school — loaded down with military-grade weapons and tactical gear — opens fire and kills or injures dozens of innocent young men and women.
What President Trump did talk about was mental health.
We know that Mr. Cruz was reportedly disturbed — he had been expelled from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High, and former schoolmates said they avoided and feared him.
The family friends who cared for him after his mother died said they knew he was troubled.
And even if we could somehow perfect a system in which an alert citizenry identifies with perfect accuracy those rare few whose mental health problems indicate a true danger, and the law enforcement system could respond appropriately in every instance to them flag in the background check system, it would still do little to prevent dangerous people from getting guns like the one Mr. Cruz allegedly used.
All indications so far are that Mr. Cruz purchased his weapon legally.
Unless that changes, any talk of making us safe from mass shootings by focusing on mental health is a farce.
The Las Vegas shooting hasn’t even prompted Congress to ban bump stocks, despite the green light from the NRA.
President Trump rescinded an Obama administration policy to cross-reference the background check lists with those of people receiving Social Security disability payments because of incapacitating mental health problems.

It Won’t Be Easy For Blue States To Dodge The GOP Tax Law
Social Security Disability

It Won’t Be Easy For Blue States To Dodge The GOP Tax Law

The new law puts a $10,000 limit on the state-and-local tax deduction ― tax wonks call it the SALT deduction ― which primarily disadvantages high-income taxpayers in so-called “blue states” with higher taxes.
Cuomo’s main proposal would shift some of the burden of New York state’s income tax from individuals to their employers.
By essentially encouraging employers to reduce their workers’ pre-tax pay, however, Cuomo’s plan would also reduce the amount of wages subject to the federal payroll taxes that fund Social Security and Medicare.
To pay the 5 percent tax on a worker earning $80,000, for instance, an employer might reduce wages by $2,000, meaning only $78,000 would be subject to federal payroll taxes.
On its current course, it will be unable to fund 100 percent of benefits beginning in 2029.
Teresa Ghilarducci, a retirement security expert at the New School, was not particularly concerned about the Cuomo proposal’s impact on Social Security’s finances.
Since people can still count charitable donations against their federal taxable income, this strategy would allow states to maintain their own revenue without their residents paying higher taxes overall.
On the question of payroll taxes, he said the IRS might want to classify something like the New York proposal as a disguised withholding of state income tax, which would need to be included in workers’ federal taxable wages.
If blue-state lawmakers are concerned that the reduced SALT deduction will turn influential, upper-middle-class taxpayers against generous state spending on schools and roads, they could simply reduce state taxes on those households and make up the difference with tax hikes on “even richer people,” Bruenig said.
In general, I think we need more payroll taxes to pay for more and more benefits.”