Legislation to renew jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed has cleared an initial Senate hurdle, but the bill's fate remains in doubt. The vote Tuesday was 60-37 to limit debate on the legislation, with a half-dozen Republicans siding with the Democrats. Georgia Senators Saxby Chambliss and Johnny Isakson voted against the bill. They are concerned the legislation will add to the deficit.
A bill that would deny jobless benefits to school workers employed by private firms during holidays is close to becoming law. The state Senate passed the bill and sent it back to the House for approval.
Georgia’s labor commissioner wants lawmakers to okay jobless benefit changes. The plan would help re-pay $700 million the state borrowed to cover unemployment reserves. But the measure appears stalled in the House.
Georgia could cut jobless benefits for people who are out of work in order to repay the federal government for $721 million the state borrowed to help the unemployed. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that bills for the debt are coming due, and cutting back on jobless benefits is one option being considered to repay the money.
State Labor Commissioner Michael Thurmond announced Thursday that federal extended unemployment insurance benefits are now being paid to nearly 91,000 jobless Georgians. The law extends the qualifying time for eligible recipients from June 2 through Nov. 30. Checks mailed today to Georgians totaled more than $76 million.