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1998-06-08 20:55:34


Social Security Depends on the Treasury's Computers



Social Security does not actually send out 50 million checks a month. The U.S. Treasury's FMS does. FMS isn't compliant. It is so far from being compliant that Congressman Stephen Horn recently gave Treasury a "C" grade, since it was pulled down by FMS.

Horn gave Social Security an A+. He grades on the curve, however. His grade does not count the elegibility system's noncompliant code -- half of SSA's total -- that is administered by the states.

If FMS doesn't get compliant, granny won't be getting her checks, either through the noncompliant Postal Service or her noncompliant bank.

This is from Westergaard's site.

* * * * * * * * *

The fact is, because of the way they do business, the Y2K readiness of the Social Security Administration might not matter. You see, SSA doesn't make payments directly to Grandma or any of the other 50 million Social Security beneficiaries. Instead, they send a list over to another agency called the Financial Management Service (FMS), a little known part of the Treasury Department.

FMS sends the actual checks or, if payment is made by direct deposit, they electronically send the money to Grandma's bank account. According to an article in the April 1, 1998 issue of the Year 2000 Law Report here's what Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin said about the FMS in testimony before a House Subcommittee:

"(T)he only bureau left with truly serious (Y2K) issues is (FMS). That bureau, which handles a wide range of financial transactions for almost every government agency - including the administration of the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System - continues to be 'the area we're most concerned about.'"

Well, those aren't very comforting words.


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