Date: February 23, 2012
The President Signs H.R. 3630,
The Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Job Act of 2012
On February 22, 2012, the President signed H.R. 3630, the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Job Act of 2012, which became Public Law 112- 96.
On February 17, 2012, the House passed the bill by a vote of 293-132, and the Senate passed the bill by a bipartisan vote of 60-36.
Following are provisions of interest to SSA.
Section 1001 - Extension of Payroll Tax Reduction
- Extends through December 31, 2012, the 2-percentage point reduction in the Social Security payroll (or self-employment) tax rate applicable to employees and the self-employed that applied through February 29, 2012, as authorized by Public Law 112-78.
- As with the provision that is currently in effect, the amount of revenue that is foregone to the Social Security Trust Funds because of the extension of this payroll tax reduction will be replaced with General Fund transfers of the same amount.
Section 2104 (Secretary of Labor) and 4003 (Secretary of Health and Human Service) - Data Exchange Standardization for Improved Interoperability
- Requires the Secretary of Labor (DOL), in consultation with an OMB interagency workgroup, States and employers, to issue a rule designating standard data elements for any information required under title III or title IX of the Social Security Act (Unemployment Compensation).
- Requires the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), in consultation with an interagency workgroup established by OMB and with consideration of State and tribal perspectives, to issue a rule designating standard data elements for any category of information required to be reported under Temporary Assistance for Needy Families.
- Requires both DOL and HHS to issue the proposed rule within 12 months of enactment and the final rule within 24 months of enactment.
Section 3101 - Qualifying Individual (QI) Program
- Extends the QI program through December 31, 2012. The QI program provides Federal reimbursement for States to cover Part B premiums for seniors with incomes between 120 percent and 135 percent of poverty.
Section 5001 - Federal Employees Retirement
- Increases by 2.3 percent the employee pension contribution for Federal employees entering service after December 31, 2012, who have less than 5 years of creditable civilian service.
- Corresponding increases in employee contributions would be made for individuals entering the CIA and Foreign Service pension systems.
- Members of Congress and congressional employees entering service after December 31, 2012, who have less than 5 years of creditable civilian service would be subject to the same contribution rate and annuity calculation as other Federal employees.