Capitol Insider



Major Events Last Week

Social Security – Social Security Earned Benefits Payment Act Introduced

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Rep. Sander Levin (D-MI) have introduced the “Social
Security Earned Benefits Payment Act” (S. 2090 and H.R. 3621). The legislation
would temporarily increase the share of existing Social Security payroll taxes that
go into Social Security’s Disability Insurance Trust Fund, by 0.85 percentage
points from 2016 through 2020. This will prevent a 20 percent across-the-board cut
in Social Security Disability Insurance at the end of 2016, and will ensure that our
Social Security system can pay all promised old-age, survivors’, and disability
insurance benefits through 2034. The Arc strongly supports this shift, called
“reallocation,” and has endorsed the legislation. The bills were referred to the
Senate Committee on Finance and the House Committee on Ways and Means,

Health Care – House Budget Committee Advances Reconciliation Bill
Repealing Parts of the Health Care Law

Last Friday, the House Budget Committee approved a bill that repeals major portions
of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) including the individual responsibility provisions,
employer responsibility provisions, and the Prevention and Public Health Fund. The
bill would also repeal the taxes on medical device manufacturers and high cost
health insurance plans. Additionally, the bill prohibits federal funding of Planned
Parenthood for one year. Reconciliation bills are bills that bring the law into greater
conformity with the budget resolution. They are unique in that they are not subject to
a filibuster, which makes it possible to pass one in the Senate with a simple majority.
The bill is expected to be brought to the floor after the recess next week and then
sent to the Senate. The President is expected to veto any legislation undermining
the ACA.

Employment – October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month

President Obama recently issued a proclamation that October 2015 was National
Disability Employment Awareness month (NDEAM). This marks the 70th year that
the Unites States has celebrated NDEAM. The theme of this year’s celebration is,
“My disability is one part of who I am.” To commemorate the anniversary, the
Department of Labor has released a timeline, highlighting the progress in the area
of employment for people with disabilities.

Employment- Supreme Court Denies Stay of Department of Labor’s Home
Care Rule

Since late 2013, the Department of Labor (DOL) and industry trade groups have
been in and out of court concerning the DOL rule, amending the minimum wage
and overtime exemptions for “companionship” domestic service workers. The DOL
extends federal minimum wage and overtime protections to an estimated two
million workers by eliminating the Fair Labor Standard Act’s (FLSA) minimum
wage and overtime exemption for certain home care workers. This week the
Supreme Court denied the industry’s request for a stay. DOL has indicated that
they will proceed with limited enforcement until the end of 2015, allowing states
and other providers additional time to ensure compliance.


Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Fellowship Program Accepting Applications

The Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr. Foundation is seeking applicants for its Public Policy
Fellowship. Applicants should be exemplary professionals, people with disabilities,
or family members of people with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities.
The fellowship prepares mid-career or more seasoned leaders to assume
leadership in the disability public policy arena at the state or national level. Fellows
spend one year in Washington, D.C. in the office of a Member of Congress,
Congressional Committee, or federal agency. Learn more and apply for the
fellowship here. Applications are due October 31, 2015.

Tony Paulauski
Executive Director
The Arc of Illinois
20901 S. LaGrange Rd. Suite 209
Frankfort, IL 60423
815-464-1832 (OFFICE)
815-464-1832 (CELL)