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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Huckleberries Online

Lack of COLA alarms seniors

The news that Social Security benefit amounts will remain flat next year isn’t sitting well with older Kootenai County residents already feeling squeezed by higher prices for many basic living items. Federal agencies announced Thursday that no cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, would be applied to Social Security payments received monthly by millions of retirees, disabled workers, spouses and children. The Social Security Act provides for automatic COLAs whenever the Consumer Price Index measures an increase in inflation. The CPI, also released Thursday, saw zero increase in the last year, primarily due to a decline in spending on gasoline and fuel oil. “I am wondering, is that going to happen every year?” said Jean Justesen, 72, of Coeur d’Alene. “With gas prices, they go up, then they go down, then back up. You know you can’t make that decision based on that. It has always fluctuated”/Maureen Dolan, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Question: Are Social Security payments an important part of your life?

D.F. Oliveria
D.F. (Dave) Oliveria joined The Spokesman-Review in 1984. He currently is a columnist and compiles the Huckleberries Online blog and writes about North Idaho in his Huckleberries column.

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