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Speaker Accommodates Hare's Request for Timely Action on Social Security COLA Payments

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Congressman Phil Hare (D-IL) today sent a letter to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) expressing the urgent need to pass a Social Security Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) payment or increase before the end of 2010.

Tonight, Pelosi announced the House would consider the Seniors Protection Act before it adjourns for the year. Hare is an original cosponsor of the legislation which would provide seniors a one-time payment of $250 in lieu of a COLA.

"Every day I hear from seniors in my district that are barely making ends meet," Hare said. "They have worked hard and played by the rules, but are again being denied a simple COLA so that their income can keep pace with rising prescription drug and grocery prices."

2010 was the first year without a Cost of Living Adjustment since consideration of inflation began in 1975. Because there was technically no inflation in 2009, there was no automatic COLA in 2010. Tomorrow, the Social Security Administration is expected to announce that there will be no COLA in 2011 either.

Hare said he will insist that the bill is fully paid for and does not add to the deficit. He has pledged to not accept an increase in his own pay during years where seniors do not receive a COLA.

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