March 27, 2014 |
WASHINGTON -- A bipartisan agreement to restore unemployment insurance benefits for more than 2.2 million jobless Americans cleared a key Senate hurdle Thursday but faces continued opposition from Republicans in the House, making final passage uncertain. House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) has called the Senate plan, which overcame a filibuster on a vote of 65-34, "unworkable. " A group of state benefits administrators has argued that their outdated computers will make it difficult to process jobless claims and prevent fraud under the Senate plan.
March 19, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - A bipartisan bill to extend unemployment insurance for more than 2 million jobless Americans is poised to clear the Senate next week, but House Speaker John A. Boehner is raising new concerns that it could be costly for states to administer and could lead to fraud. Boehner's objections echo warnings from the National Assn. of State Workforce Agencies, which has repeatedly urged Congress not to attach cumbersome new eligibility requirements. States have "antiquated" computer systems that cannot quickly implement new rules, the group warned Wednesday, and may end up giving aid to those who are ineligible.
March 13, 2014 |
WASHINGTON -- Key senators struck a bipartisan agreement Thursday to extend unemployment insurance for more than 2 million jobless Americans whose benefits have run out, though approval is not certain in the Republican-controlled House. The proposal for a five-month continuation of benefits faces a likely filibuster by tea party conservatives in the Senate, pushing votes until later this month after Congress returns from a weeklong recess. But with five Republican senators joining Democrats in Thursday's agreement, passage in the Senate is expected.
February 26, 2014 |
Hundreds of thousands of jobless Californians last year appealed decisions of the troubled Employment Development Department, adding to months of delays in getting unemployment benefits. After holding hearings, administrative law judges at the California Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board rejected many of the EDD's cursory, highly technical decisions. They threw out or revised more than half of the earlier denials, belatedly awarding long-sought assistance of up to $450 per week.
February 3, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker used his maiden speech on the Senate floor to amplify Democrats' call for an extension of benefits for the longtime unemployed. And it took well more than 140 characters to do it. Senate tradition dictates that new members wait their turn before delivering an extended floor speech. And that was true even of Booker, the crusading and frequently tweeting former mayor of Newark, whose national stature arguably already exceeded that of some of his senior colleagues when he entered the Senate 95 days ago. But when his time finally came Monday night, Booker put it to use on behalf of legislation his party has made a priority early this election year - renewing unemployment insurance for more than a million Americans whose benefits expired beginning Dec. 28. Booker began by noting he came to Washington at a time when the public view of Congress was at an all-time low, and said the lawmakers' failure to act on behalf of struggling Americans was a major reason why. He said that after meeting with many of his new colleagues he was "inspired" by various bills they believed were crucial for strengthening the economy.
January 14, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - A $1-trillion spending bill was headed for swift approval in the House by Wednesday, but legislation to extend unemployment insurance stalled in the Senate amid partisan bickering, dashing hopes for a quick deal to resume jobless benefits. Though negotiations continue, it appears increasingly unlikely that a compromise will be reached quickly to help the more than 1.4 million Americans who have been cut off from their unemployment benefits. An additional 72,000 Americans lose their insurance every week.