Idaho

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“Fiscal Cliff” Deal Means Extended Jobless Benefits For Long-Term Unemployed Idahoans

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More than 95,000 Idahoans have received federal extended unemployment benefits since the program began.

The more than 6,000 Idahoans who lost jobless benefits last week, will see those federal payments continue, thanks to Congressional action.

As part of the Congressional “fiscal cliff” deal, unemployment insurance benefits for the long-term unemployed will be extended through the end of the year at a cost of $30 billion.

The Idaho Department of Labor says the more than 6,000 Idahoans who have been receiving federal jobless benefits, won’t miss a check, and because of the “fiscal cliff” deal, payments won’t be interrupted.

Jobless Idahoans are eligible to receive up to 26 weeks of state-funded unemployment insurance benefits. Since the recession, the federal government has authorized several extensions of benefits. At its height, long term unemployed could receive up to 99 weeks of state and federally-funded benefits. Currently, an unemployed Idahoan can receive up to 63 weeks of state and federal benefits.

However, if Idaho’s monthly unemployment rate stays below 7 percent this month, the maximum number of weeks a person could get federal extended benefits will likely drop to 28 weeks.
Federal extended benefits are tied to states’ unemployment rates.

That means the maximum state-federal benefit would be 54 weeks.

The 6,300 people who received federal extended benefits last month averaged a weekly payment of $248.

The Idaho Department of Labor says 95,000 Idahoans have received $900 million in federal extended benefits since the program began. The Department reports Moody’s estimates “every dollar paid in extended unemployment benefits generates $1.61 in economic activity because benefit checks are immediately spent locally on rent, utilities, food, clothes for the family and other necessities.”

Since 2008, $1.3 billion in state benefits have been paid to jobless Idahoans.

Comments

  • Francyne L.

    My questions is: why are they only saying go the website for more information when they are not putting any information on it? Here is the first spot I have seen that it was said: “The Idaho Department of Labor says the more than 6,000 Idahoans who have been receiving federal jobless benefits, won’t miss a check, and because of the “fiscal cliff” deal, payments won’t be interrupted.” No where else does it say these words. Almost all the state around us at least say something along the lines that they need to just continue to file like normal. When you call in and wait the 20 to 25 minutes just to ask if its just a file like normal and once its all figured out they will send out checks, no one has a clue! Just that on Jan. 2 there was a conference call to get everyone on the same page. Well, where is the information to get the people on that page? Why is it that claimants can not know this information?

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