Susan's Blog

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Tax Reform

There is a bipartisan website starting up (thanks to Reps Max Baucus and Dave Camp) that is seeking imput about tax reform, cuts, and spending. Go to the site and tell your story, make suggestions! Go to

Here is what I wrote. Feel free to plagiarize and pilfer, adding your own details. Just cut and paste my letter with your own situation and names!!

People like my son Nathaniel, who is 23 and has autism and intellectual and developmental disabilities want to live and work in the community and have access to services and support to make that happen.  Nat, whose autism is severe enough to give him a Priority One in our state’s Department of Developmental Services, actually works 3 days a week with supports. He pays taxes. He actually is beginning to earn enough to pay for part of his own transportation and job coach! (Using the IRWE program of Social Security, Impairment Related Work Expense). This is beyond my wildest dreams for him. He is on his way to independence *because* of government dollars. I am forever grateful to this country for such programs as Medicaid and SSI. Another option is an umbrella company, which will make payment to you with the appropriate deductions for tax and national insurance contributions; allowable expenses will be processed at the same time.

Tax and revenue policy should support adequate funding for these vital services and supports so that more people can move to greater independence.

Further cuts to non-defense discretionary programs and any cuts to Social Security, Medicaid, and Medicare should be avoided by ensuring that the government raises sufficient revenue to support critical programs. Many people despite having Social Security, fail to update it from time to time when changes are necessary to be made and this leads to a ton of issues later in the future. To simplify the process while many government approved sites are offering online application social security administration finder option to its people, there are still some who find the necessary process of updating tedious.

Please reject policies that help only the most wealthy; and raise revenues in a progressive way without increasing poverty or income inequality.

There are reforms to the tax code that could be made without hurting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Medicaid can be modernized so that those dollars can be used towards community college programs that train people like my son how to work and live more independently, rather than languishing in Day Habilitations. Medicaid regulations need to be more flexible so that people with intellectual disabilities and autism can use Medicaid-funded programs that work towards getting them OUT of the government systems!!

Thank you for all you do for people like my son. –Susan Senator

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