Cape hospitals get $50M renovations, upgrades

AARP on guard against Social Security cuts

STATE PROVIDES LOW-COST FINANCING TO HELP CAPE COD HOSPITALS

Emergency centers, operating rooms, labs, intensive care units and patient rooms at Falmouth Hospital and Cape Cod Hospital in Hyannis will receive renovations and upgrades with revenues from $50 million in tax exempt bonds issued by a state agency. MassDevelopment announced the bond issuance Tuesday on behalf of Cape Cod HealthCare Obligated group, which provides services through the two community hospitals.

ON PROGRAM'S ANNIVERSARY, AARP ON GUARD AGAINST SOCIAL SECURITY CUTS

On the eve of the 78th anniversary of the creation of Social Security, AARP called on Congress Tuesday to debate solutions to the program's stability in separate legislation and to refrain from including changes to the retirement benefit program in a budget deal. Specifically, AARP, which represents the interests of older Americans, urged Congress not to "rush" changes like increasing the program's eligibility age or using a difference consumer price index calculation known as the chained CPI.

In the years since President Franklin Roosevelt signed the legislation creating Social Security, the program has provided a retirement security base for millions of Americans, according to AARP, which added that the program's importance is heightened by "declining pensions, inadequate savings, shrinking home values, and a difficult job market." AARP stated, "Some in Washington want to cut this invaluable program to reduce the deficit. Social Security is a self-financed program, not a piggy bank for deficit reduction.

That's why AARP is fighting to stop Congress and the President from cutting Social Security benefits using the 'chained CPI,' a change that would hurt seniors already in retirement as well as veterans, women, children and disabled Americans." The Congressional Budget Office estimates that using the chained CPI for annual cost of living adjustments would reduce Social Security outlays by $1.6 billion in 2014, with savings growing to $24.8 billion in 2023, and totaling $127 billion over the 2014-2023 period. Social Security recipients would face an average benefit reduction of 0.25 percent in 2014 (about $3 per person per month) and approximately 2 percent in 2023 (roughly $30 per person per month), according to the CBO. In Massachusetts, more than one million residents receive an average monthly Social Security retirement benefit of $1,173 per month.


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