Social Security Coalition Intensifies Fight

SEPTEMBER 1999 - For
some time we've been reporting on the activities - and successes - of
both the national and state coalitions opposing mandatory Social
Security. Our Association belongs to the state group - Mass Coalition
to Preserve Retirement Security (MCPRS) - which in turn is affiliated
with the national Coalition to Preserve Retirement Security (CPRS).

While
the White House and Republican leadership have not pushed for mandatory
coverage, the issue has not been completely taken off the table. And
while there appears to be a stalemate between the President and the
Congress over Social Security, reports continue to circulate of efforts
to bring about an agreement.

For
example, in July it was reported that President Clinton and the
Republicans had agreed on what is called a "lock box" provision which
requires the SS payroll taxes to be used only ("locked up") for Social
Security. Such action begs the question whether other agreements will
follow.

According to Teacher
Retirement Board Executive Director Tom Lussier, who is also CPRS's
chairman, "In the current atmosphere, with sudden political shifts, one
can ill afford to be complacent. To the contrary, the coalition must
intensify its fight."

To that end,
CPRS has retained the services of a well-established Washington public
relations firm, David Vienna & Associates. CPRS has hired Vienna to
monitor mandatory SS coverage and manage its relations with affected
organizations and retirement systems.

Vienna
had a solid and varied background in the US Senate, having worked for
Senators Abe Ribicoff, "Scoop" Jackson and Sam Nunn during that time,
before starting his firm over 20 years ago. Among the firm's public
sector clients are the California Public Employee's Retirement System
(CALPERS) and Ohio Public Employees Association, to name a few.

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