Unemployment Extension July 22, 2010 Update: HR 4213 Unemployment Extension Bill Passed Senate Vote, House of Representatives’ Vote to Follow – This is the latest unemployment extension news. Things are moving slowly but surely for those unemployed Americans. Yesterday, we saw that the first Senate vote to counter the Republican filibuster happened. With the help of Senator Carte Goodwin who replaced the late Robert Byrd from West Virginia, Democrats ruled the Senate vote closing at 60-40 vote for the much awaited passage of unemployment extension bill.
Last night, we witnessed the final Senate vote as shortly after 7 p.m., the “motion to concur in the House amendment to the Senate amendment to the bill with Reid Amendment No. 4425” passed the Senate gathering the needed “yes” votes of 51 on a vote of 59 to 39 sending it one step closer to U.S. President Barack Obama’s desk.
During the Senate session, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said that: “Nevada families struggling to make ends meet have endured more than their share: after losing their jobs through no fault of their own, they were forced to wait weeks for an important safety net that was supposed to be there.”
Now, the next and final step for this Unemployment Extension Bill is the vote from the House of Representatives which will happen tomorrow. The amendments made in the Senate need to be approved by the House. After this final vote, the bill will now be send over to Obama for his signature to finally and officially become a law. Once the bill becomes a law, it is expected that state labor departments will immediately begin implementing it and sending out unemployment benefits to help the millions of unemployed Americans. It is expected that this bill will go into effect as early as Thursday or the latest before the week ends.
For the record, this unemployment benefits extension bill is particularly known as H.R. 4213. Initially named as the “American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act”, the bill has now been renamed to as the “Unemployment Compensation Extension Act” to reflect the extension of unemployment benefits for Americans who have been out of work for 6 months or longer. Originally a $141 billion, 426-page government stimulus package for the unemployed Americans, the bill is now down to $34 billion and 36 pages after amendments.
As previously mentioned, it is important to reiterate that this is not the Tier 5 that most unemployed Americans are clamoring as it would not create additional weeks of unemployment benefits. 99 weeks would still be the maximum amount of time an unemployed American could receive unemployment benefits for states with 8.5% and above unemployment rates and 86 weeks would still be the maximum time for those who are located in states with below 8.5% unemployment rates.
This bill would also extend the filing deadline for unemployment insurance benefits which expired last June 2 to until November 30, 2010 allowing unemployed individuals to file and move into their next tier of unemployment benefits. However, the Federal Additional Compensation Program providing an extra of $25 per week of unemployment benefits payments would not be extended under this bill. In addition, COBRA will not be extended in this bill.