THIS MONTH IN SOCIAL SECURITY HISTORY
February 14, 1936 The Social Security Board approved twelve regional areas and twelve regional offices for its field office setup.
February 8, 1937 The First Annual Report of the Social Security Board submitted to Congress.
February 27, 1937 The first claims under Title II of the Social Security Act were adjudicated and forwarded to the Social Security Board on February 27. The first claims were actually paid in March.
February 13, 1940 An Appeals Council, consisting of three members, was appointed by the Social Security Board to direct and supervise the holding of hearings on claims for old-age and survivors insurance benefits and to review decisions of referees, subject to review by the courts. Joseph McElvain was appointed the director. The staff of the Appeals Council included a Consulting Referee for the Old-Age and Survivors Insurance program as a whole and a Hearing Referee for each of the twelve regions.
February 20, 1947 Arthur J. Altmeyer was elected Executive Secretary of the Reparatory Commission for the International Refugee Organization.
February 2, 1953 President Eisenhower, in his State of the Union Message, recommended that the "old-age and survivors insurance law should promptly be extended to cover millions of citizens who have been left out of the Social Security system."
February 1955 By this date, old-age and survivors insurance beneficiaries numbered seven million.
February 27, 1956 SSA's new electronic computer system, an IBM 705, began operation in the Candler Building under the watchful eyes of technicians from IBM. The first computer application consisted of posting earnings records, benefit computations and reinstating incorrectly reported earnings.
February 3, 1967 With the mailing of the benefit checks, the Social Security Administration became the first large Federal agency to implement mass ZIP code mailing.
February 1972 The Bureau of Data Processing announced it would be issuing new Social Security cards and mailing them directly from central office, thereby shifting issuance from the field to the central office.
February 1982 SSA's Systems Modernization Plan is published.
February 9, 1996 First meeting of the new Social Security Advisory Board was held in Baltimore. Among their other activities, the Board members took a tour of the SSA History Room.
February 11, 1997 SSA's proposed final regulations for cycling of benefit payments were published.
February 15, 2000 SSA launched its Electronic Newsletter (e-News) through which visitors are able to subscribe to Social Security e-news, a monthly electronic newsletter providing brief items on the latest Social Security information of public interest.
February 5, 2002 James B. Lockhart, IIII, formally sworn-in to be Deputy Commissioner of Social Security.
February 5, 2002 The "Ticket to Work" program was officially launched in the first 13 States (it is expected to be in operation nationwide in 2004).
February 19, 2004 Jo Anne Barnhart, Commissioner of Social Security, signed a "totalization" agreement today with Japanese Ambassador Ryozo Kato that will remove from U.S. citizens working for U.S. companies in Japan the burden of paying social security taxes to both countries. The agreement also will remove the double taxation requirement for Japanese citizens working for Japanese companies in the United States.
February 12, 2007 Michael J. Astrue was sworn in as the Commissioner of Social Security at the agency’s national headquarters in Baltimore, Maryland. He will serve a six-year term that expires on January 19, 2013.
February 26, 2008 Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security, announced that the agency has begun making offers to 144 of the 175 new Administrative Law Judges (ALJs) it will hire this fiscal year. Due to litigation and budget cuts, the agency has about ten percent fewer ALJs than it did a decade ago. During that same time, the number of cases waiting for a hearing decision has more than doubled.
February 3, 2009 Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security, in a letter today to Governor Edward G. Rendell, Chair of the National Governors Association, urged states to exempt their Disability Determination Services (DDSs) from hiring restrictions and furloughs.
February 12, 2008 Kathleen Casey-Kirschling, the nation's first Baby Boomer, today made history as the first of her generation to receive a Social Security retirement benefit. Having applied online for benefits Ms. Casey-Kirschling, who was born at one second after midnight on January 1, 1946, today received her first payment by direct deposit.
February 12, 2009 SSA ’s online services have earned the highest overall score in the most recent e-Government Satisfaction Index. The Index, which is administered by ForeSee Results in conjunction with the University of Michigan's American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), also gave three of SSA’s applications the highest scores in government.
February 1, 2010 SSA announced that 15 healthcare providers and networks have received $17.4 million in contract awards to provide electronic medical records to the agency. These electronic medical records, which will be sent through the Nationwide Health Information Network (NHIN), will significantly shorten the time it takes to make a disability decision and will improve the speed, accuracy, and efficiency of the disability program.
February 4, 2011 SSA dedicated the Robert M. Ball Federal Building at SSA headquarters in Baltimore. This renaming of the Operations building at SSA was mandated by an act of Congress.