• On January 1, 2021 the Senate voted to override the President’s veto of H.R.6395, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year (FY) 2021. This action followed a similar override vote in the House of Representatives on December 28, 2020. With the Senate’s action, HR 6395 becomes law. The legislation contains several provisions of interest to SSA, including a temporary increase in the number of annual leave hours (for most employees) that can be rolled over into 2021.
    Previous Action 12/20/19

  • On December 31, 2020, the President signed S.1869, the "Secure Federal Leases from Espionage and Suspicious Entanglements Act" or the Secure Federal LEASEs Act of 2020, which became Public Law 116-276. The bill previously passed the Senate on December 8, by unanimous consent, and the House on November 17, under suspension of the rules. This law, among other things, provides that Federal lessees must require covered entities to identify and disclose whether a foreign source owns certain leased spaces.

  • On December 27, 2020 the President signed H.R.133, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, which became Public Law 116-260. The new law includes several provisions of interest to SSA, including another round of economic impact payments and amendments to section 205(r) of the Social Security Act that ensures that States and SSA are reimbursed for State death information, and permits SSA to share State death information with the Department of Treasury for its Do Not Pay (DNP) system.

  • On December 22, 2020 the President signed S. 578, the ALS Disability Insurance Access Act of 2019, into law. The bill previously passed the Senate on December 2, by a vote of 96-1, and the House on December 8, under suspension of the rules. The bill amends Title II of the Social Security Act to eliminate the five-month waiting period for disability insurance benefits under such title for individuals with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).
    Previous Actions 12/08/20; 12/04/20

  • On December 8, 2020 the House passed H.R. 2477, the Beneficiary Enrollment Notification and Eligibility Simplification Act of 2020 (BENES Act of 2020), as amended, under suspension of the rules. This bill would require SSA to: 1) provide outreach notices to certain beneficiaries when they are nearing eligibility for Medicare; 2) change when Medicare coverage takes effect for people who enroll in the Initial Enrollment Period or General Enrollment Period, and; 3) provide additional months of Part B coverage for certain people who have end stage renal disease after they have received a successful organ transplant. The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration.

  • On December 4, 2020, the President signed H.R. 1668, the Internet of Things (IoT) Cybersecurity Improvement Act of 2020, which became Public Law 116-207. The bill previously passed the Senate on November 17, by unanimous consent, and the House on September 14, by voice vote. The legislation would require the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to develop and publish standards and guidelines for Federal Government use and management of IoT devices1.  See Legislative Bulletin 116-19 for provisions of interest to SSA.

  • On September 30, 2020, the House suspended the rules and passed H.R. 7340, the Chai Suthammanont Remembrance Act of 2020, as amended by voice vote.  In general, the bill would require Federal agencies to publish on their website their reopening plans for sending employees back to workstations during a public health emergency (e.g., coronavirus pandemic).  This bill now moves to the Senate for action.
  • On September 30, 2020, the House suspended the rules and passed H.R. 7496, the COVID PREPARE Act of 2020, as amended by voice vote. The bill would require Federal agencies to submit to Congress plans for responding to any resurgence of COVID-19 cases. The bill moves to the Senate for action.
  • On June 30, 2020, the Senate passed S. 4104, the Stopping Improper Payments to Deceased People Act, without amendment by unanimous consent. This bill would, among other things, amend section 205(r) of the Social Security Act to permit SSA to share the full file of death information with the Department of Treasury for its Do Not Pay working system and for purposes of administering its Economic Impact Payments. The bill now moves to the House for consideration.
  • On June 16, 2020, the Senate passed S. 3731, the Improving Social Security’s Service to Victims of Identity Theft Act of 2020, without amendment by unanimous consent. This bill would amend Title VII of the Social Security Act to require the Commissioner to establish a single point of contact for individuals whose Social Security number has been misused. The House introduced an identical bill, H.R. 5446, on December 17, 2019 and it is pending in the Committee on Ways and Means.

  • On March 27, 2020, the President signed H.R. 748, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, or CARES Act, into law.  Earlier in the day, the House passed the legislation by voice vote.  The bill previously passed the Senate on March 25, by a vote of 96-0.  The new law includes numerous provisions that provide relief to people and businesses affected by the novel coronavirus, including expanding unemployment benefits, creating a small business loan program, providing funding to hospitals, and issuing special recovery tax rebates to most individuals. See Legislative Bulletin 116 -16 for provisions of interest to SSA. 

  • On March 2, 2020, the President signed S.375, the Payment Integrity Information Act of 2019, which became Public Law 116-117. The House previously passed the bill on February 5, 2020 The Senate passed the bill on July 16, 2019. This law changes government-wide improper payment reporting requirements by repealing and replacing the Improper Payments Information Act of 2002 (IPIA), the Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Act of 2010 (IPERA), the Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Act of 2012 (IPERIA), and the Fraud Reduction and Data Analytics Act of 2015 (FRDAA).See Legislative Bulletin 116-14 for a summary of the provisions of interest to SSA.

  • On December 30, 2019, the President signed H.R. 150, the Grant Reporting Efficiency and Agreements Transparency (GREAT) Act of , which became Public Law 116-103.  The House previously passed the bill on December 16, 2019, on motion to suspend the rules and agree to the Senate version of the bill by voice vote.  In general, the law establishes data standard requirements for Federal grant reporting and requires agencies to report audit-related information for Federal awards in an electronic format.  Previous Action 12/30/2019

  • On December 30, 2019, the President signed S. 151, the Pallone-Thune Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act (Pallone-Thune TRACED Act), which became Public Law 116-105. The law, among other things, establishes monetary penalties for robocalls, and requires the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to mandate telecommunications providers implement call authentication and traceback technology.  The FCC is also required to issue rules, policies, or procedures to protect individuals from robocalls and spoofing, including texts, from an unauthenticated number.  While the law does not require the Social Security Administration to take any action, the agency may be asked to take part in an interagency workgroup to study and report to Congress on the prevention and prosecution of robocall violations.
  • On December 11, 2019, the House passed H.R. 5038, the Farm Workforce Modernization Act of 2019, as amended by the House Judiciary Committee.  The bill would, among other things, create a new certified agricultural worker (CAW) status that provides temporary work authorization, requires SSA, as practicable, to assign CAWs Social Security numbers (SSN) through an automated system, and offers CAWs the ability to adjust to lawful permanent resident status.  In addition, the bill would make permanent an employment eligibility verification system (i.e., E-Verify), mandate use of the system by agricultural employers, and allow the Department of Agriculture (USDA) to assist agricultural employees contesting tentative nonconfirmations (TNC).  The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration.
  • On December 11, 2019, the House Ways and Means Committee held a mark-up of H.R. 5306, the Know Your Social Security Act of 2019. The bill would require us to automatically mail a Social Security Statement every year to all eligible individuals, except for those who, in response to an SSA inquiry, elect not to receive it in the mail. The bill would be effective with respect to Statements required to be provided after the date of enactment. The bill now moves to the full House for consideration.
  • On August 22, 2019, the President signed H.R. 1079, the Creating Advanced Streamlined Electronic Services (CASES) for Constituents Actwhich became Public Law 116-50. The bill previously passed the House unanimously on February 11, 2019, and the Senate unanimously without amendment on July 31, 2019.  In general, the law requires OMB to issue guidance requiring agencies, including SSA, to accept electronic forms that allow an individual to provide consent to disclose information from or access to their records.
  • On July 25, 2019, the Senate passed S. 1275, the Federal Agency Customer Experience (FACE) Act of 2019, as amended by voice vote. The House introduced an identical bill, H.R. 2586, on May 8, 2019 and it awaits further action.  The bill, among other things, would require Federal agencies, including SSA, to collect voluntary feedback from the public and certain entities regarding customer experience and service delivery.  It also includes provisions related to the Paperwork Reduction Act and employee appraisals.
  • On June 26, 2019, the Ways and Means Committee favorably reported the BETTER Act of 2019 and the HEARTS and Rural Relief Act.  These bills would require SSA to provide certain Medicare outreach notices, make Medicare coverage take effect sooner for people who enroll during the GEP or during certain months of their IEP, and exempt certain veterans from having to enroll in Part B in order to be eligible for TRICARE. The bills now await consideration by the House of Representatives.
  • On July 1, 2019, the President signed H.R. 3151, the Taxpayer First Act.  The Senate passed the bill on June 13, 2019 without amendment by voice vote, and it passed the House on June 10, 2019, by voice vote, under suspension of the rules.  The bill, among other things, requires the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to notify individuals of employment-related identity theft, and the Social Security Administration (SSA) as necessary, to request annually such IRS employment-based identity theft information.  Additionally, it authorizes IRS to lower the electronic wage reporting threshold.  Previous Action 06/19/19. Became Public Law 116-25.
  • On April 9, 2019, the House amended and passed, H.R. 1957, the Taxpayers First Act of 2019, by voice vote, under suspension of the rulesThe bill, among other things, would require the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to notify individuals of employment-related identity theft, and the Social Security Administration (SSA) as necessary, to request annually such IRS employment-based identity theft information.  Additionally, it would authorize IRS to lower the electronic wage reporting threshold.  This bill now moves to the full Senate for consideration.