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Checks in the Mail
Thursday, 07 May 2009

May 7--Congressman John Barrow (GA-12) announced that payments of $250 are going to Social Security recipients beginning today with the goal that all such payments will be sent out by the end of May.  These payments are provided by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

In addition, by mid-May, $250 payments will also begin to go out to recipients of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits.

“In Georgia, 1,176,284 Social Security recipients will be receiving a $250 payment,” said Barrow.  “This money will be a big help to those who need it the most, and the rest will end up helping the economy.  These payments total more than $13 billion and will go out to more than 50 million people, bringing another boost to our economy through consumer spending.”

Millions of the Social Security recipients receiving these payments are widowed, divorced, or single, and among the seniors with the lowest average incomes.  For many, these payments will make a real difference:

 •           Social Security is the only source of income for nearly one-third of all unmarried seniors receiving Social Security.

 •           The median annual income for unmarried Social Security recipients over age 65 who are women is only $13,151.  The median annual income of unmarried Social Security recipients over age 65 who are men is only $17,611.

 •           Nearly 30 percent of unmarried Social Security recipients who are women over age 65 are poor or near-poor – with 17.4 percent living below the federal poverty line and another 10.8 percent with incomes below 125 percent of the poverty line.

In addition to the economic recovery payments being made to Social Security and SSI recipients, the Recovery Act also provides for payments to disabled veterans and Railroad Retirement recipients.  The payments to Railroad Retirement recipients are scheduled to begin to go out in late May and the payments to disabled veterans in June.  In total, more than 50 million Americans will get this one-time payment.

If someone regularly receives benefits from two or more of these programs – such as Social Security and Railroad Retirement, or a disabled veterans’ benefit and SSI – he or she will receive just one $250 payment.


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