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Social Security, Solar Energy, and Ulysses (Yes, Really): Houston Matters for Thursday, Jan. 8, 2015

Texas Congressman Kevin Brady wants to change a long-standing provision of Social Security to provide more benefits to some public sector employees who work second jobs. He’s pushing for passage of a bill called The Equal Treatment of Public Servants Act to repeal and replace the Windfall Elimination Provision first passed back in the 1980s. On […]

Texas Congressman Kevin Brady wants to change a long-standing provision of Social Security to provide more benefits to some public sector employees who work second jobs. He’s pushing for passage of a bill called The Equal Treatment of Public Servants Act to repeal and replace the Windfall Elimination Provision first passed back in the 1980s.

On this edition of Houston Matters we hear why the Congressman favors this change in Social Security. Then, we’ll discuss the state of the Social Security system today, and welcome your questions for Bob Jackson, the Texas State Director of AARP, and Andy Hardwick from the Social Security Administration in the Greater Houston area.

Then, we discuss what you need to know about social security benefits, from how to maximize them, how to fold them into your retirement plans, how much or how little you should rely on when you retire, and some common mistakes people make when paying into or withdrawing Social Security benefits. We’ll welcome your questions for Troy Sharpe, President and Co-Founder of the Houston-based Oak Harvest Financial Group.

Also this hour: Last month, Austin’s City Council updated the city’s Energy Resource, Generation and Climate Protection Plan, with an auspicious goal: to see that 55 percent of Austin’s energy comes from clean, renewable resources by 2025. One component of that effort is to expand the use of solar energy. How about Houston? What could we accomplish here in the next ten years on the solar energy front? We’ll talk it over with Gavin Dillingham from the Houston Advanced Research Center.

And: On Saturday, the Houston-based contemporary music ensemble Musiqa will present a chamber opera called Ulysses, Home. It combines the mythological story of Ulysses with modern stories of soldiers with post-traumatic stress returning to domestic life. In conjunction with the upcoming performance, Musiqa recently hosted a panel discussion about PTSD. Artistic Director Anthony Brandt composed the work (with a libretto by Neena Beber). We’ll talk with Brandt about the work, and what he hopes to accomplish with it, in particular for area veterans.

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