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"Senior citizens in Georgia will be helped by enactment of bipartisan Senior Citizens Freedom to Work Act"

March 28, 2000

WASHINGTON, D.C.-- Today, Congresswoman Cynthia Mckinney (D-GA) praised the House of Representatives for passing the bipartisan bill, H.R. 5, repealing the Social Security earnings limit, that included a Senate technical amendment, and sending the bill to President Clinton's desk for his signature. The Senate technical amendment clarifies that the earnings limit would be repealed and effective immediately in the month that a senior reaches their 65th birthday.

The earnings limit originated in the 1930's and it remains despite the vast changes in the economy and the lives of senior citizens that have taken place over the last 60 years. Under current law, seniors who claim Social Security benefits before they reach 69 are subject to a reduction in benefits if they continue to work. For seniors 65 to 69, benefits are reduced by one dollar for every three dollars that their earnings exceed the limit - $17,000 in 2000, rising to $30,000 in 2002 and indexed after that. H.R. 5 would repeal this limit entirely, effective immediately.

"The Senior Citizens Freedom to Work Act would help the senior citizens in Georgia who are being penalized for working," McKinney said. "It makes no sense to penalize senior citizens for participating in the workforce. People remain healthy and vigorous longer than they did in the 1930's and it makes sense to repeal this obsolete and punitive limit," concluded McKinney.

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