Social Security is entering a new era. Starting next year, benefits will be sustained not only by current payroll taxes but also by withdrawals from reserves accumulated over the last three decades. In about 15 years, however, the Social Security trust funds will be depleted. At that point, the earmarked revenues will cover only about 80 percent of the benefits of the program promised to Americans under current federal law.
Reforming Social Security to make it financially sustainable for the long run and modernizing benefits to better meet the needs of 21st century retirees and the disabled will require higher payroll taxes. Aversion to tax increases causes skittish lawmakers to delay addressing the unavoidable challenges of Social Security, even though the required adjustments grow more wrenching every year that a feasible solution is delayed.The Hill Op-Ed