November 14, 2009

And the Democrats are doing what, exactly, about this? Do the Republicans want the economy to get worse, hoping it means they'll sweep the mid-terms? (As if we needed any further proof of their sociopathic mindset.)

While this piece is about California, it will apply to other states as well:

Few, if any, unemployed people will be able to get the full 20-week extension in jobless benefits because Congress delayed so long and failed to change a sunset provision, says a California Employment Development Department official.

As a result, most Californians — an estimated 285,000 long-term unemployed — will be able to qualify for only an additional 14 weeks of benefits, says Loree Levy, an EDD spokeswoman.

The legislation, which was approved by the House today, provides 14 weeks of additional benefits to all states. Those states with a jobless rate over 8.5% — California's is 12.2% — get up to 20 more weeks.

But instead of simply tacking on the additional weeks in one new extension, the bill sets up a Byzantine plan that adds two new extensions to the two previous ones before the last extension, referred to as FedEd, kicks in.

Congress previously extended FedEd from 13 weeks to 20 weeks, but included a sunset provision for the end of the year. If Congress doesn't change that provision, FedEd will revert to 13 weeks on Jan. 1.

So even if a person could start collecting on the latest extension today, the calendar will run out before that person can get all 20 weeks of benefits. As currently written, they will get one additional week for the second extension and, because their unemployment will carry into next year, 13 weeks of FedEd, for a maximum of 14 weeks.

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