Reps. Peters, Israel Introduce Bill to Assist Families Caring for Ailing and Aging Relatives
WASHINGTON, D.C. –Today, Congressman Scott Peters (D-CA) and Congressman Steve Israel (D-NY) introduced legislation that will provide financial relief for families who are caring for an aging or ailing relative. The Americans Giving Care to Elders (AGE) Act creates a federal tax credit of up to $6,000 to offset elder care expenses for family caregivers.
“In San Diego and across the country, adult children of aging parents are the first and best caregivers to our seniors,” said Rep. Scott Peters. “Family members take on this responsibility with love and respect for their parents, but often without any formal guidance or support, which can impact their own careers and financial security. Our proposal will give them the financial relief and important resources they need to care for their aging loved ones.”
“Many hardworking New Yorkers are feeling the financial burden of caring for elderly loved ones while being saddled with the expenses of raising their own families,” said Rep. Steve Israel. “As the baby boomer generation gets older and requires more care, especially for diseases like Alzheimer’s, it is common sense that we provide a tax credit to offset caregiver expenses and give these families much-needed relief.”
This legislation is endorsed by the National Council on Aging and Stroke Association, the Alzheimer’s Association, Jewish Family Service of San Diego, Alzheimer's San Diego, the San Diego Senior Alliance, and Third Way,
“Millions of families find themselves as members of the ‘sandwich generation,’ coping with the challenges and costs of care for elderly parents at the same time they are caring for their own children,” said Senator Amy Klobuchar who has introduced similar legislation in the U.S. Senate. “As baby boomers age, these numbers will continue to grow. We must do everything we can to support daughters and sons, and our legislation will help make it easier for them to care for their families.”
“I want to thank Congressman Israel and Congressman Peters for their commitment to helping families who struggle with the financial burden of caring for their loved ones who have Alzheimer's and other diseases,” said Kathy Scopp-Distler, former caregiver and Ambassador to the Alzheimer’s Association, which has endorsed Reps. Israel and Peters’ legislation. “The AGE Act will make it easier for families to continue caring for their loved ones by negating some of their expenses and providing them with peace of mind.”
In addition to establishing a federal tax credit, the AGE Act will strengthen the National Family Caregiver Support Program (NFCSP), which helps fund direct services to family caregivers. The bill authorizes the NFCSP until 2019 and increases funding from $145.6 million (FY2013-FY2015) to $187 million.
Additionally, the AGE Act will increase support for family caregivers by directing the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services to establish the National Caregiving Resource Center. The center will be designated as a central clearinghouse where families, public agencies and private organizations can learn about best practices and promising innovations to support families in their caregiving roles.
Congressman Peters serves the 52nd District of California which covers much of central San Diego County including Poway, Coronado, and large portions of the City of San Diego. He is a member of the House Armed Services Committee and House Judiciary Committee. The Congressman is a former environmental attorney, City Council President, and Port Commission Chairman.