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News Brief

Nov. 5, 2013 |  By: Barnett/INS

Small Social Security Hike

It is the smallest increase for Social Security recipients in Iowa in decades, but it could be worse.

The government has announced that Social Security benefits will go up next year by one-point-five percent. National AARP President Rob Romasco says that’s the smallest increase since 1975, but it would be even lower if there were changes to how the cost of living is calculated, as some in Congress have proposed.

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Current projections have Social Security staying solvent for about 20 more years, so Romasco says there needs to be a conversation on how to keep the program operating and strong for the future. But he says since American workers are the ones who have funded Social Security, it should be a separate debate, not part of any debt talks. Romasco says the same is true for Medicare, since workers and employers also help with funding that program, which has been squeezed by the high cost of medical care in the U-S.

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Romasco was in Iowa and Nebraska this past week as part of his tour of the U-S, hosting discussions on Medicare and Social Security. In Iowa, those programs benefit around 450-thousand senior citizens.