Medicare: Key for planning
At the Woodbury chapter meeting, every hand shot up when McGuire asked whether Medicare is important to their retirement plans.
In an interview, Ruthie Paynter, 70, said she and her husband, Lawrence, still receive medical bills despite their Medicare and secondary insurance coverage.
On average, Medicare beneficiaries in New Jersey spend $7,100 a year on out-of-pocket health care costs.
Paynter, a retired laboratory technician from Woodbury, said she wouldn't mind an increase to the maximum amount of earnings subject to Social Security taxes, currently capped at $110,100, if it meant her children would one day receive benefits.
Joanna Lucidi, 73, a retired X-ray technician from Paulsboro, worries that Social Security benefits could dry up.
"It's too late if we don't do something now," she said. "It could help me, but it's going to help the next generation more" because many young people don't save for retirement and will likely need the cushion of Social Security and Medicare.
This fall, the You've Earned a Say sessions will also include an analysis of some of the proposed changes by the conservative-leaning Heritage Foundation and the liberal-leaning Brookings Institution.
Action is unlikely until after the presidential and congressional elections in November.
Check the AARP New Jersey Facebook page for a list of You've Earned a Say sessions. To add your voice to the discussion, fill out our questionnaire about Social Security and Medicare
You may also like: Barry Rand says you've earned a say.
Christina Hernandez Sherwood is a writer living in Collingswood, N.J.