Representative Richard Neal (D – Massachusetts) is serving as the new chairman for the Congressional Ways and Means Committee in Washington, D.C. As the chairman of Ways and Means, he has oversight on the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP), which has long been a drain on retired Texas educators.

The WEP, which took effect in 1983, provides a means of eliminating the “windfall” of Social Security benefits received by beneficiaries who also receive a pension based on work not covered by Social Security.

Ninety-five percent of Texas public school employees do not pay into Social Security through their work with Texas schools. However, many have other jobs before, during, or after their employment in education in which they do pay into the federal program.

Neal has released a statement addressing his progress a new bill that would benefit retirees affected by the WEP.

“I am developing a revised bill to provide meaningful WEP relief to current retirees and public employees while treating all workers fairly, which I will introduce this summer,” he said.

Neal has worked closely with TRTA in the past, as well as the former chairman of the Ways and Means Committee Representative Kevin Brady (R – Houston). You can read Neal’s full statement here.

TRTA has also been working with the Massachusetts Retirees, a group of retired public employees who seek to repeal the WEP.

TRTA and our coalition partners are working every day on WEP, and we believe some big announcements will be coming soon. Stay tuned to the Inside Line, as we will have opportunities to make a difference on this important issue.