The Texas Retired Teachers Association made another push for reform on the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP), as Executive Director Tim Lee, Legislative Coordinator Bill Barnes and Pensions Consultant Ronnie Jung visited Washington, D.C.
The WEP is an unfair social security provision that hurts the financial income of retirees in Texas and 12 other states. Retirees who fall under the WEP are penalized for their years of public service. These retirees include public educators, firefighters and policemen.
TRTA has been working closely with Congressman Kevin Brady (R – The Woodlands) to repeal the WEP and replace it with a new, fairer formula. Brady has introduced HR 711, The Equal Treatment of Public Servants Act, to Congress.
HR 711 proposes to provide financial relief to current and future retirees who fall under the WEP. While HR 711 is not a full repeal of the WEP, it would provide significant financial relief for many, many current and future retirees.
The WEP was first instituted in 1983, and since its inception, TRTA has fought vigorously for its repeal. HR 711 is a bill that has a real chance of going into effect, as it is a bi-partisan bill created by the chairman of the House of Ways and Means Committee, Brady.
The bill has more than 100 co-sponsors, and is overwhelmingly supported by Texas congressional members. We project action on the WEP legislation may be imminent. Please, call your member of congress and ask them to stand with chairman Brady. The WEP is a national issue. Even in states that provide Social Security to teachers, there are retirees from Texas who are affected by this issue.
If your congressman has not signed on to support HR 711, please call them today. Please stay tuned to The Inside Line as more updates become available. Here is the list of Texas Congressmen who have not signed on to the bill:
Lloyd Doggett – D – Austin (Doggett’s support is particularly important as he sits on the Ways and Means Committee.)
TRTA members are making a difference both locally and nationally. TRTA will continue to fight for the rights of its public education retirees on Social Security issues like the WEP.