Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Okay, now, the following article is going ot make you think. I'm sure we all are in agreement that the slumping economy needs fixed. Is this solution, however, part of the best way to fix it? Does it really help or or simply placate the blindness community who get SSI payments? See this article:

Possible OneTime SSI Payment as Part ofStimulusPackage>> Obama Increase likely for> low-income elderly>> By ANDREW TAYLOR - 16 hours ago>> WASHINGTON (AP) - More than 7> million poor people who are> elderly,> blind or disabled and receive> cash benefits averaging $477 a> month> could get an extra monthly> payment as part of> President-elect Barack>> Obama's $800 billion economic> recovery plan.> Democratic congressional aides> said the idea of an extra> Supplemental> Security Income payment is> gaining traction on Capitol Hill> as> lawmakers and staff aides hold> daily meetings to work out> details of> the upcoming stimulus bill. The> aides spoke on condition of> anonymity> to discuss the closed-door> negotiations.>> Democratic lawmakers hope to> have an economic stimulus bill> ready for> Obama's signature by> mid-February, although officials> indicated Monday> night that numerous provisions> are unsettled.>> Several said the emerging> legislation likely will provide> at least $70> billion over the next two years> to help states meet the demand> for> Medicaid, which provides health> care for low income people, and> another $25 billion more to help> individuals who cannot afford to> pay> for private, post-employment> health benefits.>> An estimated $35 billion is> tentatively ticketed for> additional> unemployment benefits.>> The tax provisions remain in> flux, with Obama's call for a> break for> companies that create new jobs> described by Democratic> officials as> all but dead. Several Democrats> prefer to use the funds to make> sure> upper middle class families are> not ensnared by the alternative> minimum tax.>> Democrats are more favorably> inclined toward Obama's proposal> for a> tax break for lower-paid> individuals and couples, of up> to $500 and> $1,000.>> The officials who described the> provisions did so on condition> of> anonymity, saying they were not> authorized to discuss the> details.>> The idea of a one-time,> additional SSI payment this year> would cost> about $4 billion, which would go> to more than 7 million poor> people> enrolled in the program. Most of> them are disabled, though about> 2> million poor seniors would also> benefit.>> The relatively low cost of the> idea seems to help its chances,> though> it's not a sure bet to be> included in the final economic> recovery> package, which will blend tax> cuts for individuals and> businesses with> huge spending initiatives such> as aid to state governments, an> increase in local school aid,> and infrastructure projects such> as road> and bridge construction and> repair.>> "It's in the package as of now,"> said an aide to a top House> leader.>> The idea meets one of Obama's> key criterion for the stimulus> bill,> which is to speed money into the> hands of people who are likely> to> spend it. One criticism of last> year's $600-1,200 tax rebate> checks to> individuals and couples was that> many people simply saved the> money or> paid down debt instead of> injecting it into the economy> through spending.>> Even with their monthly checks,> SSI recipients remain in> poverty, and> they're more likely to spend the> money quickly.>> "These people are extremely> poor," said Bob Greenstein,> founder of the> liberal Center on Budget and> Policy Priorities. "I certainly> think,> and I think the Obama people> have thought that this is a very> sound> stimulus idea. It would have one> of the highest bangs for the> buck.">> Obama transition spokesman Nick> Shapiro would not confirm that> Obama> supports the idea. The> transition has been tightlipped> about many> elements of the economic> recovery package as it is being> negotiated.>> Supplemental Security Income> delivers payments of up to $637> per month> to individuals and $956 to> couples. About one-fourth of> recipients are> 65 or older.>> Associated Press writer David> Espo contributed to this story.>

No comments: