President Biden signed into law today a bipartisan bill unleashing more than one trillion dollars to rebuild America’s crumbling infrastructure. While not specifically targeted to seniors, the infrastructure plan will help older Americans both directly and indirectly. The plan provides funding for improved public transportation, housing, and high-speed internet access – all of which seniors depend on. When these infrastructure items improve, so does seniors’ quality of life.
The infrastructure plan will also boost Social Security, says Max Richtman, President and CEO of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare:
“The bipartisan infrastructure plan that President Biden just signed into law will do more than build roads, bridges, and broadband. It also will give a big boost to Americans’ retirement security. That’s because the new, higher-paying jobs the infrastructure plan will create means more money flowing into Social Security through increased payroll contributions. This new revenue can help extend the solvency of the Social Security trust fund, currently projected to become depleted in 2034.” – Max Richtman, NCPSSM President & CEO, 11/15/21
Just as importantly, the Biden plan will increase the potential for bigger Social Security benefits for workers who get new and better-paying jobs. Higher pay and longer work histories add up to larger Social Security checks. That’s welcome news at a time when more and more seniors rely on Social Security for all or most of their income.
Higher benefits ultimately help everyone – not just beneficiaries – because of Social Security’s stimulus effect on the overall economy.
“Social Security’s positive economic impact shouldn’t be ignored. American families spend more than $1 trillion in Social Security benefits nationwide each year, providing more than $1.6 trillion in economic stimulus to the national economy every year.” – BoostSocialSecurityNow.org
In fact, the National Committee offers a state-by-state breakdown of Social Security’s economic stimulus effect at socialsecurityspotlight.org.
Unlike the Build Back Better plan, a sweeping social safety net bill which will more directly benefit seniors, some Republicans did join Democrats in voting for the President’s infrastructure legislation. And while the Build Back Better plan will only succeed on a party-line vote in the absence of Republican support, the National Committee commends a rare moment of bipartisanship on behalf of rebuilding the country’s infrastructure.
“We applaud the Republicans and Democrats in Congress who joined together to pass this historic legislation — and President Biden for putting it forward. This is exactly what a government that works for the people – both the young and the old – is supposed to do.” – Max Richtman