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Retired Central Texans forecasted to get big boost in monthly Social Security benefits

Published: May. 12, 2022 at 5:47 PM CDT
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BELTON, Texas (KWTX) - Senior citizens and others who rely on a monthly Social Security checks could see a boost in their monthly checks to account for the increased cost of living.

On Wednesday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released the consumer price index report for April, which revealed the inflation rate in the nation - currently at 8.3% -remained near a 40-year high.

“All of us are being impacted but for those of us that are on a fixed income they don’t have the flexibility that some of us may have,” said George Losoya, the director of the Area Agency on Aging, which helps senior citizens across seven Central Texas counties.

Based on the April CPI report, the Senior Citizens League is forecasting that those benefiting from monthly Social Security checks could see an 8.6% increase in their checks. The typical monthly Social Security check is about $1,658. The increase would mean an additional 142.60 per month, which would bring the average check to around $1,800 per recipient.

The increase would be the highest Social Security cost of living adjustment in 40 years, but it may not be enough to withstand the rate of inflation in the country.

Losoya says his organization has witnessed the elderly population having to make tough choices to stay afloat; like opting for cheaper but less healthy food options despite their critical medical conditions.

“They become a bigger cost to society because they’re not taking care of themselves,” Losoya said.

The Area Agency on Aging highlights that even with record gas prices, cost of food and clothing increases, the greatest economic challenge facing the Central Texas aging population is access to affordable housing.

Losoya says parts of Central Texas has been designated by the federal government’s Dept. of Housing and Urban Development as areas that are in an affordable housing crisis.

“They’re on interest lists up to 6 months to 7 months to get into a rental unit that has some sort of assistance for our aging population or disabled population. Even our vouchers here there is a one year waiting list for Section 8 vouchers,” Lasoya said.

The Social Security Administration has already increased the payments to Social Security recipients in 2022 by 5.9 percent.

The Area Agency on Aging of Central Texas is offering various programs to help senior citizens and people with disabilities manage their limited incomes. You can access more information on those programs by clicking here.

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