Retired Central Texans who depend on Social Security will see a 5.9% increase in monthly benefits starting in 2022.

That's huge news for the millions of retired folks as the 5.9% increase is the largest cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) in 39 years. We've all been affected by inflation and those on a fixed income will now see about a $92 a month increase in benefits.

The average estimated payment per month next year will be $1,657 for individuals or $2,753 per month for the married couple's benefit.

The increase in costs for food, energy and personal care items has left many who collect Social Security needing more money to help accommodate the rising costs. But the increase may not be enough.

Mary Johnson, an analyst for the nonpartisan Senior Citizens League advocacy group, tells the Associated Press"It's going to be welcome, but what we are hearing is that even with the COLA, buying power will still be eroded because price increases are still going up.”  

The increase will benefit about 70 million people overall including those who collect Social Security plus disabled veterans and federal retirees. The report also notes that about half of seniors depend on Social Security benefits for about half of their income with about 25% of those relying on those payments for their entire monthly income.

More needs to be done to help ensure those who live solely on Social Security benefits can also survive on those same benefits. The cost for Medicare’s Part B premium for outpatient care is expected to go up by $10 a month in 2022 and although for some, a $10 a month increase is still affordable but for many, it will hurt their monthly budgeting.

Let's take the increase as the good news it is and hopefully we don't have to wait another 39 years for an increase this size.

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