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11.03.2015
August 1, 2013PrintThe goal of the federal Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program is to provide assistance to elderly and disabled individuals who have limited financial resources. Although SSI was created with the elderly poor in mind, today the program mainly benefits nonelderly disabled adults and children. Policymakers have liberalized eligibility standards for SSI's benefits over the years, with the result that many people who are capable of working are making the choice to remain idle and receive benefits instead. This essay describes the history of Supplemental Security Income, the current structure of the program, and the causes of rising program costs. Supplemental Security Income was created in the 1970s in an effort to consolidate existing state programs for the poor and make them more efficient. The Social Security Act of 1935 authorized grants to the states for aid to the elderly poor and the blind. In 1972, the Supplemental Security Income program was created as part of a Social Security and welfare reform bill that President Nixon called "the single most significant piece of social legislation to be considered by the Congress in decades."4 It became effective January 1, 1974. Unlike the existing Social Security Disability Insurance program, a history of work was not required to receive benefits from SSI.
Congress intended for the program to largely benefit the elderly poor, but the nonelderly disabled soon became the primary beneficiaries.
The increases in the number of disabled beneficiaries resulted from a sequence of events related to the disability determination process. Following the Carter administration's lead, the incoming Ronald Reagan administration also focused on trimming the disability rolls.
The backlash led to the Social Security Disability Benefits Reform Act of 1984, which effectively reversed the Carter reforms. The combined effect of the Zebley decision and the favorable consideration of mental health problems resulting from the 1984 law ultimately led to disabled children and adults comprising the majority of SSI beneficiaries. For individuals 65 years of age and older, eligibility for SSI is determined by the levels of income and financial assets. A Social Security Administration office first determines if the applicant meets the income and asset requirements. The DDS first decides whether the disability is severe enough to limit basic life activities.
The SSA first introduced Listings of Impairments in 1968 in order to expedite the claims process.
In 2011, the SSA received 3 million claims for SSI benefits, up from 1.7 million in 2000. A complex, subjective, and outdated disability determination process for SSI has created a breeding ground for awarding and continuing benefits to people who shouldn't be on the disability rolls. The SSA also has a major problem with enforcement to make sure that current SSI recipients are still qualified for the program on the basis of both financial and health status.
The federal government faces huge and growing problems in administering disability programs because of the size and inherent complexity. Because of the subjectivity and complexity involved in determining if a medical condition warrants disability benefits, outcomes at the appeals level show a high degree of variation. A recent Senate oversight committee investigation reviewed 300 cases from one county in three different states. These problems ranged from basing decisions on evidence of questionable value, to citing insufficient evidence to support the decision made, misusing expert testimony, and holding perfunctory hearings.
The SSA discourages the introduction of evidence in support of a claim less than 10 days before a hearing. Judges who spoke to investigators pointed to the heavy workload and the fact that rules used to determine eligibility have become so complex. The SSA has started performing "focused quality reviews" on random samples of decisions made by ALJs. The complicated process for seeking disability benefits has become a boon to legal firms that specialize in disability claims.
An applicant whose appeal is successful is awarded payments backdated to the claimed onset of the disability. The Wall Street Journal profiled the nation's largest "disability advocate," the firm Binder and Binder.72 The rise of the firm stems from a 2004 federal law that made it easier for nonlawyers to represent applicants. In recent years, particular attention has focused on the growth in the number of children on SSI because of claimed mental or behavioral problems. Officials wade through piles of medical, clinical, pharmacy, and school records, some haphazardly or partially completed, to determine how a child functions in six designated "domains,'' such as how well he or she communicates, or gets along with peers, or can take care of his or her own basic needs.
Officials may also rely on standardized neuropsychological and other tests or hire an independent medical expert to evaluate the child.
The Globe found ample anecdotal evidence to support what appears to be common knowledge among educators and health professionals: many parents are seeking to get their child diagnosed with a mental or behavioral problem in the hopes of obtaining a prescription for psychotropic drugs, which they believe increases the chances of their children qualifying for SSI benefits. Medical professionals have reported feeling pressure to provide a diagnosis of disability, and will sometimes tailor a diagnosis to increase the child's odds of being awarded benefits.
Another disturbing problem is that SSI creates a disincentive for teenagers to work, and instead they learn to become dependent on a government check. The lack of Continuing Disability Reviews being conducted on children is surely contributing to this contentment. The Supplemental Security Income program is reminiscent of the old cash welfare program, Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC). While that might be a practical step in the right direction, a better reform would be to move full responsibility for funding and administering SSI to state governments.
Devolution of the SSI program to the states would allow greater innovation by state policymakers with their low-income programs, who have stronger incentives to reduce taxpayer costs and maximize work incentives than do federal policymakers. 1 Social Security Administration, SSI Annual Statistical Report, 2011, SSA Publication No. 6 Congressional Budget Office, Supplemental Security Income: An Overview (December 2012), p. 7 Social Security Administration, "Social Security Disability Amendments of 1980: Legislative History and Summary of Provisions," Social Security Administration Bulletin 44, no. 13 Social Security Administration, SSI Annual Statistical Report, 2011, SSA Publication No. 14 Social Security Administration, Annual Statistical Supplement to the Social Security Bulletin, 2012, SSA Publication No.
15 A fiscal year can contain 11, 12, or 13 SSI benefit payments, which explains part of the year-to-year variation in program costs shown in the chart.
17 Umar Moulta-Ali, Social Security Income (SSI), Congressional Research Service, 94-486 (January 25, 2013), p. 18 Umar Moulta-Ali, Primer on Disability Benefits: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Congressional Research Service, RL32279 (August 31, 2012), p.
21 See Umar Moulta-Ali, Primer on Disability Benefits: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Congressional Research Service, RL32279 (August 31, 2012), p.
22 Congressional Budget Office, Supplemental Security Income: An Overview (December 2012), p. 23 Congressional Budget Office, Supplemental Security Income: An Overview (December 2012), p. 24 Umar Moulta-Ali, Social Security Income (SSI), Congressional Research Service, 94-486 (January 25, 2013), p. 25 For a detailed breakdown of income and asset requirements, see Umar Moulta-Ali, Primer on Disability Benefits: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI), RL32279 (August 31, 2012), pp. 27 See Umar Moulta-Ali, Primer on Disability Benefits: Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Congressional Research Service, RL32279 (August 31, 2012), p. 28 Office of Inspector General, Social Security Administration, The Social Security Administration's Listing of Impairments, A-01-08-18023 (March 2009), p. 29 Office of Inspector General, Social Security Administration, The Social Security Administration's Listing of Impairments, A-01-08-18023 (March 2009), p.
30 Minority Staff Report, Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, Social Security Disability Programs: Improving the Quality of Benefit Award Decisions (September 13, 2012), p. 32 Social Security Administration, SSI Annual Statistical Report, 2011, SSA Publication no. 33 Congressional Social Security Administration, SSI Annual Statistical Report, 2011, SSA Publication no.
37 Social Security Administration, SSI Annual Statistical Report, 2011, SSA Publication no.
38 Social Security Administration, Annual Statistical Supplement to the Social Security Bulletin, 2012, SSA Publication no. 39 Social Security Administration, SSI Annual Statistical Report, 2011, SSA Publication no.
40 Social Security Administration, SSI Annual Statistical Report, 2011, SSA Publication no.
41 Government Accountability Office, High-Risk Series: An Update, GAO-13-283 (February 2013), p. 42 See Government Accountability Office, Modernizing SSA Disability Programs: Progress Made, but Key Efforts Warrant More Management Focus, GAO-12-420 (June 2012). 43 Social Security Administration, SSI Annual Statistical Report, 2011" SSA Publication no.
44 Office of Inspector General, Social Security Administration, The Social Security Administration's Listing of Impairments, A-01-08-18023 (March 2009), p. 45 Government Accountability Office, Modernizing SSA Disability Programs: Progress Made, but Key Efforts Warrant More Management Focus, GAO-12-420 (June 2012), p.
46 Government Accountability Office, Modernizing SSA Disability Programs: Progress Made, but Key Efforts Warrant More Management Focus, GAO-12-420 (June 2012), p. 47 Government Accountability Office, Modernizing SSA Disability Programs: Progress Made, but Key Efforts Warrant More Management Focus, GAO-12-420 (June 2012), pp. 49 Government Accountability Office, Supplemental Security Income: SSA Has Taken Steps to Prevent and Detect Overpayments, but Additional Actions Could Be Taken to Improve Oversight, GAO-13-109 (December 2012), p.
50 Government Accountability Office, Supplemental Security Income: SSA Has Taken Steps to Prevent and Detect Overpayments, but Additional Actions Could Be Taken to Improve Oversight, GAO-13-109 (December 2012), p.
51 Congressional Budget Office, Supplemental Security Income: An Overview (December 2012), p. 52 Congressional Budget Office, Supplemental Security Income: An Overview (December 2012), p. 53 Congressional Budget Office, Supplemental Security Income: An Overview (December 2012), p.


55 Government Accountability Office, Social Security Disability: Management of Disability Claims Workload Will Require Comprehensive Reporting, GAO-10-667T (April 27, 2010), p.
57 Office of the Inspector General, Social Security Administration, Disability Impairments on Cases Most Frequently Denied by Disability Determination Services and Subsequently Allowed by Administrative Law Judges, A-07-09-19083 (August 2010), p.
58 Office of the Inspector General, Social Security Administration, Disability Impairments on Cases Most Frequently Denied by Disability Determination Services and Subsequently Allowed by Administrative Law Judges, A-07-09-19083 (August 2010), p.
59 Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, Social Security Disability Programs: Improving the Quality of Benefit Award Decisions (September 13, 2012), p. 60 Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, Social Security Disability Programs: Improving the Quality of Benefit Award Decisions (September 13, 2012), p. 61 Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, Social Security Disability Programs: Improving the Quality of Benefit Award Decisions (September 13, 2012), p.
62 Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, Social Security Disability Programs: Improving the Quality of Benefit Award Decisions (September 13, 2012), p. 63 Damian Paletta, "Disability-Benefits Systems Faces Review," Wall Street Journal, December 15, 2011.
64 Damian Paletta, "Ex-Judge's Disability Rulings Probed," Wall Street Journal, November 25, 2011. 65 Damian Paletta, "Ex-Judge's Disability Rulings Probed," Wall Street Journal, November 25, 2011. 66 Damien Paletta, "Disability-Benefits Systems Faces Review," Wall Street Journal, December 15, 2011. 67 Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, Social Security Disability Programs: Improving the Quality of Benefit Award Decisions (September 13, 2012), p.
68 Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, Social Security Disability Programs: Improving the Quality of Benefit Award Decisions (September 13, 2012), pp. 70 Office of the Inspector General, Social Security Administration, Disability Impairments on Cases Most Frequently Denied by Disability Determination Services and Subsequently Allowed by Administrative Law Judges A-07-09-19083 (August 2010), p. 76 Government Accountability Office, Supplemental Security Income: Better Management Oversight Needed for Children's Benefits, GAO-12-497 (June 2012), p. 79 Government Accountability Office, Supplemental Security Income: Better Management Oversight Needed for Children's Benefits, GAO-12-497 (June 2012), p. 80 Government Accountability Office, Supplemental Security Income: Better Management Oversight Needed for Children's Benefits, GAO-12-497 (June 2012), pp. 82 Congressional Budget Office, Supplemental Security Income: An Overview (December 2012), p. 84 Patricia Wen, "A Cruel Dilemma for Those on the Cusp of Adult Life," Boston Globe, December 14, 2010. 85 Patricia Wen, "A Cruel Dilemma for Those on the Cusp of Adult Life," Boston Globe, December 14, 2010. 86 Government Accountability Office, Supplemental Security Income: Better Management Oversight Needed for Children's Benefits, GAO-12-497 (June 2012), p. 87 Government Accountability Office, Supplemental Security Income: Better Management Oversight Needed for Children's Benefits, GAO-12-497 (June 2012), p.
88 Government Accountability Office, Supplemental Security Income: Better Management Oversight Needed for Children's Benefits, GAO-12-497 (June 2012), p. 89 Government Accountability Office, Supplemental Security Income: Better Management Oversight Needed for Children's Benefits, GAO-12-497 (June 2012), p.
90 Government Accountability Office, Supplemental Security Income: Better Management Oversight Needed for Children's Benefits, GAO-12-497 (June 2012), p. February 3, 2015 by Dan Taylor 2 Comments Reid just came back from surgery to restore sight in his eye after suffering an exercising accident on New Years Day, and he immediately launched into an attack on Republicans for stalling homeland security funding.A heavily bandaged Sen.
Reid, who returns for the first time as the minority leader in the Senate, had a large bandage over his right eye as he took to the floor to challenge Republicans for tweaking the homeland security bill, according to a CBS News report. Republicans want to use the funding bill to roll back executive actions by the Obama administration on immigration, which Democrats are fighting. Reid pointed to terrorist attacks around the globe as a reason to move forward quickly with funding the homeland security bill. Reid, who is 75 years old, had an exercising accident last month that injured his right eye when the equipment he was using broke at his home in Nevada on New Years Day. Both Hillary and Trump are Guilty of Worshiping Money to Raise Campaign FundsAugust 20, 2016 By Victor Alagbe   Money is worth its weight in gold in its ability to pull political strings in Washington. Critics wrong to insist Obama end his vacation to visit Louisiana flood sightsAugust 19, 2016 By Chris Walker Security detail could divert resources, causing more harm than good for the people of Louisiana.
Baseball is looking at ways to speed the pace of playAugust 19, 2016 By Jerry Newberry With attendance down, baseball looks to shorten games to keep fan interest.
Thank goodness, Target has found a solution to the bathroom problemAugust 18, 2016 By Jerry Newberry Single-occupancy restrooms could be just what the country needed. Officially released March 4, the President's budget makes clear the challenges currently posed by the Budget Control Act spending caps for R&D support.
As covered elsewhere, however, the President has also proposed additional funding via the Opportunity, Growth, and Security Initiative (hereafter referred to as OSGI). According to current AAAS estimates, only a handful of agencies' R&D budgets would remain ahead of inflation under the President's request in FY 2015.
It's important to remember that even though many agencies would see real-dollar R&D reductions, many of those agencies are still ahead of the broader discretionary spending curve. The extra OGSI funding would make a big difference for many of these agencies, even adjusting for inflation. The Space Technology Directorate at NASA, which seeks rapid public-private technology development, is among the largest programs for budgetary gains. USDA extramural research would receive a large increase even as the agency's intramural research funding is trimmed, though significantly more funding for both is contained within the OGSI.
While NIH is ahead of the discretionary curve as described above, the agency's budget remains on a steady downward trajectory. Lastly, while the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) would receive a large apparent cut in R&D funding, this is largely due to a reduction in funding for construction of the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility, a Biosafety Level 4 facility in Kansas. In the big picture, the President's R&D budget does get slightly ahead of the overall discretionary curve, even excluding the extra OGSI funding (chart at right).
Going forward, discretionary spending returns to sequester levels in FY 2016 and remains there for the rest of the decade, meaning continued challenges for R&D investment.
In November 2008, USAID assumed responsibility for disaster response and reconstruction in the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) and the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) from the U.S. Typhoon Maysak: From March 29 to April 1, 2015, Typhoon Maysak crossed over FSM’s Chuuk and Yap states, causing four deaths, affecting approximately 29,700 people, and damaging houses, crops, fruit trees, and public infrastructure.
Frequently Asked Questions - Get answers to common problems and learn more about ReliefWeb. Supplemental Security Income is a means-tested welfare program funded by general federal revenues.
While the number of elderly beneficiaries has slightly decreased since the program began operating in 1974, the number of nonelderly disabled adults and children has increased substantially. Supplemental Security Income spending has risen from $33 billion in 2000 to an estimated $57 billion in 2013, which is a 70 percent increase.
Of particular concern is the growing number of children who are qualifying for SSI on the basis of a mental or behavioral disability. One serious problem is that the disability determination process has become a complex administrative nightmare.
But rather than promoting efficiency and saving money, SSI has become another bloated federal welfare program that encourages government dependency and discourages individual initiative. Amendments to the Social Security Act in 1950 added grants to the states to assist needy individuals who were permanently and totally disabled.2 In 1969, President Nixon determined that this federal-state arrangement for providing assistance to the needy was too inefficient. Supplemental Security Income replaced federally-subsidized, state-administered aid programs for the aged, blind, and disabled with one program financed and administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA).
Indeed, the number of aged individuals receiving SSI benefits has remained flat over the decades. In the late 1970s, the administration of Jimmy Carter successfully pursued legislation to rein in the growing cost of the Social Security Disability Insurance program, which uses the same disability determination process as SSI. However, a political backlash erupted when newspapers began reporting "horror stories" about individuals who had their disability benefits terminated. The 1984 law required the SSA to develop new standards, which ultimately led to looser eligibility requirements. Zebley that the Social Security Administration must use the same SSI eligibility determination process for children that it uses for adults.11 Specifically, a child who did not have a condition on the SSA's list of impairments would now have his or her ability to "function" used to determine whether a child's disability qualified for benefits. In 1980, the elderly poor represented 54 percent of total SSI beneficiaries; disabled children and nonelderly adults accounted for 4 percent and 42 percent, respectively. For children and individuals of working age, a determination of disability is required in addition to a determination of financial capabilities.
If the applicant meets those requirements, a state Disability Determination Service (DDS) then follows a step-by-step process to determine whether the applicant's medical condition warrants benefits. If the answer is yes, a determination is made as to whether the disability meets or is the equivalent of a condition in the SSA's "Listings of Impairments." If the answer is yes, the applicant qualifies for benefits. Indeed, the appeals process has four levels, and at each level the individual receives another chance to convince a government official or judge to grant benefits. A rejected applicant can first ask the SSA for a "reconsideration" of his or her claim from a different group of SSA officials. Depending on an individual's circumstances, every one to six years the SSA is supposed to determine if a beneficiary still meets the income and asset requirements. Children are supposed to have a medical review when they turn 18 years of age and low-birth weight infants are supposed to be reviewed at age 1. In particular, there is a massive backlog problem for disability claims at the hearings level.
When the SSA inspector general (IG) examined the four impairments that are most frequently accepted for review at the appeals level, the IG found that the variation could be large even within the same city.
The IG cited an example where one judge approved 97 percent of his cases that involved back disorders, while another judge only allowed 15 percent of his cases with that health problem.58 Judges are largely independent and possess broad discretion to award or deny benefits. In one region, it is mandatory not to admit evidence that isn't received five days in advance.
The lawyer typically receives 25 percent, or up to $6,000 of this "back pay." While that amount may not be enticing to general law firms, firms specializing in disability claims can make millions of dollars based on a high volume of cases and knowing how to work the system. The motivation for this legal change was to nurture advocacy organizations that would help move applicants through the complicated process and thus reduce the backlog of claims.


SSI was originally intended to help families with children possessing a clear disability like cerebral palsy or Down syndrome. But most diagnoses are not of that severity and SSI approval hinges on the highly subjective determination of whether a child's condition, or cluster of conditions, amounts to a "severe'' impairment. One "marked'' impairment is not enough for SSI approval, but a "severe'' impairment in one domain, or, alternatively, "marked'' impairments in two domains, is. Nevertheless, in many cases, diagnoses are based largely on a parent's account, and disability evaluators never meet the child face-to-face.
In addition, hospitals and health insurance companies are hiring for-profit "eligibility service providers" to help uninsured children obtain SSI because the children will then qualify for Medicaid coverage.83 State agencies also contract with these companies because SSI is fully paid for by the federal government whereas the cost of paying for traditional cash welfare is partially a state responsibility. As one teenager on SSI because of ADHD explained to the Globe, "If I work and I get a certain amount, then they'll take money away from my mom. That program was scrapped and replaced with the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program in 1996 after widespread agreement that AFDC was a failure.
Once an individual goes on the SSI rolls, he or she is likely to remain there permanently. The federal government seems incapable of running welfare programs in a frugal manner with due regard to taxpayers' interests. Ideally, responsibility for caring for the needs of the indigent should rest with private charities, churches, and other voluntary organizations, but in the near term, devolution to the states would be a large step forward. Ball, "Social Security Amendments of 1972: Summary and Legislative History," Social Security Administration Bulletin 36, no.
1; and Social Security Administration, Performance and Accountability Report for Fiscal Year 2012, November 8, 2012, p. Randall Frye, president of the Association of Administrative Law Judges, letter to Carolyn W.
With hardly any additional room available in the discretionary budget above FY 2014 levels, and with three-quarters of the post-sequester spending reductions still in place overall, many agency R&D budgets would effectively stand still. This extra funding would make a significant difference for science and innovation funding throughout government, though Congress has not yet seemed eager to embrace it. This is in large part due to cuts in defense and NASA research activities, though some NASA research has also been reclassified as development, which pushes the number lower without necessarily reflecting a change in the actual work. Both defense and nondefense R&D would increase by at least four percent before inflation.
This is due to the continued constraints placed on discretionary spending by the Budget Control Act spending caps, and continued growth in the mandatory budget.
The chart at right has the basic breakdown, displaying percent change from FY 2014 R&D funding levels adjusted for inflation. Recall that the December budget deal only allowed an increase of 0.2 percent in discretionary spending in FY 2015, well below inflation. It's a similar story for NASA's Commercial Crew program, which supports industry partnerships, and is included in the Exploration Systems program at right. The largest driver of this decline is a 57.8 percent cut to medical research, though other activities would be cut as well.
Other DHS R&D activities would not be cut by quite so much, and the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office would receive a funding increase. But in the current environment, it's difficult to see how much more will be possible without Congressional interest in lifting the discretionary spending caps. Unlike the related Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program, no work history is required to receive SSI benefits. Many children who are capable of becoming productive working adults are being lured into long-term government dependency. The inherently subjective nature of the process is fostering abuses of the system at the expense of taxpayers.
This troubled experiment in federalizing welfare should be ended, and responsibility for assisting low-income elderly and disabled people returned to the states. For example, one provision required that state administrators reexamine "non-permanently" disabled beneficiaries at least once every three years to see if they were able to reenter the workforce.7 Prior to this requirement, little was done to remove able-bodied people from the disability rolls who should not be collecting benefits. That meant decisions were based on subjective considerations, such as a child's ability to communicate and his or her social behavior.
Recipients under the age of 18 account for 16 percent and recipients 65 years of age and over account for 25 percent. Unlike Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, a history of work is not required to receive SSI benefits.
If the answer is no, the applicant may still qualify for benefits depending on his or her ability to perform work. Thus, individuals with questionable claims of disability have up to five tries at receiving benefits, and they just have to succeed once. If rejected again, the applicant can request a hearing before an administrative law judge (ALJ). If the council either denies the claim or decides against reviewing it, the applicant can then file a lawsuit in a federal district court.
Binder and Binder quickly moved to hire cheaper nonlawyers and started advertising nationally. Following the aforementioned Zebley decision, disability benefits awarded to children with claimed mental and behavior disorders such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) skyrocketed. Of that, almost half were overdue by at least 3 years.88 Many of these children were diagnosed with conditions that were expected to improve.
As an open-ended entitlement, AFDC encouraged long-term dependency and discouraged the poor from becoming self-sufficient. The abysmally low rate of disability reviews is clear evidence that the federal government is simply not doing its job to protect the public purse by making sure that only the truly needy are collecting benefits. Daly, The Declining Work and Welfare of People with Disabilities (Washington: AEI Press, 2011), p. Some R&D areas that have been featured in past budgets, including climate research and support for fundamental science, would not make much fiscal headway in this year's request.
To date, appropriators don't seem particularly willing to consider this extra funding, but including it alongside the base budget does make the picture somewhat brighter for many R&D agencies.
Geological Survey (USGS), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and the Department of Transportation (DOT). NASA would likely receive an increase of a few percentage points above FY 2014 levels with that extra funding, and some agencies — like USDA or the National Science Foundation, for instance — would receive substantially more. On the nondefense side, efficiency, renewables, and grid technology programs would receive major increases, as would the innovative Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E).
The program budget would decline due to cuts in development funding for the next-generation crew vehicle and launch system. The medical research reductions are a recurring theme in Administration budgets and are added back in by Congress, though the other cuts are something of a departure from recent years.
This decline is greater when accounting for the higher rate of inflation in biomedical research compared to the rest of the economy.
Still, science and innovation appropriations were ahead of the curve in the final FY 2014 outcome, which may bode well for R&D funding this year, but expectations will need to be tempered. Under the new arrangement, FEMA provides USAID with funding to conduct response and reconstruction activities following a U.S.
Ambassador Dorothea-Maria Rosen declared a disaster in FSM due to the effects of the typhoon.
Department of State, and DHS, met in Honolulu, Hawaii, to discuss lessons learned during the Typhoon Maysak response and explore ways of expediting funding for future responses. As part of the Supreme Court ruling, the SSA was compelled to contact 452,000 children who had been denied benefits since 1980 and inform them that they might now be eligible.12 After a surge in enrollment following Zebley, Congress tightened eligibility in the 1996 welfare reform bill.
First, the DDS determines whether the applicant can perform work from any previous occupations. The figure is only one-third for children who turn 18, which means most will end up permanently on the SSI rolls.52 Less than 1 percent of disabled adults and other disabled children receive a CDR each year.
Instead of pursuing work and developing job skills, these children will become young adults who aren't truly permanently disabled but are being conditioned to rely on a government check. Further, the convoluted and increasingly subjective disability determination process has opened the door to exploitation by specialty law firms that have figured out how to work the system. Zebley on Child SSI and AFDC Enrollment, National Bureau of Economic Research, Working Paper 6125 (August 1997), p.
Nevertheless, the Administration has still managed to shift some additional funding to select programs in a reflection of recurring priorities, including renewable energy and efficiency, advanced manufacturing, and technology for infrastructure and transportation. The fact that the NIH R&D budget is ahead of this curve and yet still more than $200 million smaller in inflation-adjusted dollars, as shown at right, illustrates how truly tight the fiscal situation is. The Office of Science would basically stand still, while nuclear and fossil energy technology programs would be cut.
Some of the few areas seeing increased funding at NIH would include translational science, neuroscience and the BRAIN Initiative, and mental health. The additional OGSI funding would nearly, but not quite, return the NIH budget to pre-sequestration levels. Participants also received an update on changes to the Operational Blueprint and clarified the standard operating procedures of the various USG agencies in future responses.
However, the consequent reduction in SSI enrollment for children was fleeting and the rolls have been growing ever since. If the answer is no, the DDS determines whether the applicant can perform any other work that exists in the national economy. Less than 5 percent of adults have their benefits stopped after a CDR (20 percent of other disabled children have their benefits terminated).53 Regardless, increasing the number of CDRs performed would help weed out recipients who no longer deserve benefits. The FY 2015 spending caps are still much closer to sequestration levels than otherwise, after all. On April 28, President Obama issued a disaster declaration for FSM, authorizing the release of federal funding for emergency relief and reconstruction assistance from FEMA and other USG agencies. Government (USG) disaster response and reconstruction in FSM and RMI under this hybrid agreement, USAID and FEMA developed an Operational Blueprint, which guides coordination between the two agencies. Obama signed a presidential disaster declaration, authorizing the release of federal funding for emergency relief and reconstruction assistance.



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