Senators Announce Bipartisan Proposal to Extend Emergency Unemployment Compensation

Last week, a group of 10 U.S. Senators led by Jack Reed (D-RI) and Dean Heller (R-NV) announced an agreement to reauthorize emergency unemployment insurance (UI) benefits for 5 months.  The bill is cosponsored by Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Susan Collins (R-ME), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), and Rob Portman (R-OH). The plan will allow for retroactive payments to eligible beneficiaries going back to December 28, 2013. Unlike some previous proposals, the plan does not propose to partially pay for extending emergency UI by cutting Social Security disability benefits for people who also receive UI. The Arc and other national disability groups have strongly supported extending emergency UI but have strongly opposed cutting Social Security as a partial pay-for. The Senate is expected to vote on the bill soon after returning from recess the week of March 24.

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