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Windfall Elimination Provision H.R.848/H.R.1073

The Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) effectively reduces a person's
own Social Secuirty (SS) benefit if he/she also becomes eligible for a
Federal pension after 1985.  It also is affected by state and local
pensions.

Anyone with 30 years of SS earnings is exempt from WEP.

The WEP was enacted because the SS computation formula gives an advantage
to workers having lower wages by replacing a higher percentage of their
pre-retirement earnings Federal retirees who have some work under SS,
appear to SS as being lower wage earners.  Therefore, the computation 
for Federal retirees applying for benefits under their own SS number
is computed at 40 percent of the average monthly wage (AMW)for the first
$455, instead of the 90% used for non-government workers.

Important fact: A civil service survivor annuitant's own SS is not
affected by the WEP as long as the survivor is not also a retired federal
employee.

In the 105th Congress Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) and Rep. Max Sandlin(D-TX)
introduced WEP bills.   Sandlin's bill, H.R. 3007, would have repealed
the WEP.  Frank's bill, H.R. 2549, would eliminate the WEP if a person's
combined monthly Social Security benefit (before WEP), plus the gross 
amount of the government annuity, is $2,000 or less. If the combined 
amount is $3,000 or more, the WEP would apply, and the Social Security 
benefit would be reduced in accordance with present law. For combined 
amounts of over $2,000, but less than $3,000, the WEP would be phased in
at different percentage rates until the full WEP formula applied at the
$3,000 level.

Other than a hearing by the Ways and Means Committee's Social Security 
Subcommittee (the committee of jurisdiction) in May of 1998, no action 
was taken on these bills. Both of the above bills were reintroduced in 
the 106th Congress as H.R. 742 and H.R. 860, but neither had enough co-
sponsors to reach the floor, primarily due to insufficient co-sponsorship.

In the 107th congress, Rep. Max Sandlin has introduced H.R.848 to repeal
the Windfall Elimination Provision.  Rep. Barney Frank has also introduced
his version of this legislation as H.R.1177.

Action Needed

Click on Co-Sponsors of H.R.848to determine if your representative 
has co-sponsored this bill. Co-sponsorship of the bill in the prior 
Congress can be determined by clicking on Co-Sponsors of H.R.742.
Click on Co-Sponsors of H.R.1177to determine if your representative
has sponsored this bill. Co-sponsorship of the bill in the prior
Congress can be determined by clicking on Co-Sponsors of H.R.860.

 If your representative has not co-sponsored H.R.848 and/or H.R.1177, chapter Presidents
and Legislative Officers should urge their members to write letters, make
phone calls, and send e-mails to their representatives, urging them to 
co-sponsor H.R.848 and/or H.R.1177.

Note: Because the WEP also affects state and local employees, chapter Legislative Officers should contact local chapters to urge them also to contact their representatives. Ref. Ret. Life 4/99 (pg 8), 5/01 (pg 14)


Sample letters that you can use:
WEP Legislative History:
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