WV Jobless Benefits Bill Follows Many Warnings

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

Charleston, WV (AP) -- Legislation that would increase revenues for jobless benefits follows years of warnings about the fiscal health of West Virginia's program.

A 2005 study of the unemployment compensation trust fund recommended a key provision of the bill proposed by Gov. Joe Manchin and up for passage this session.

That part would link the rate of the tax that employers now pay into the fund to changes in state wage levels.

The 2005 legislative audit predicted that the fund would face bankruptcy by the end of this decade.

That's because its revenue sources haven't changed since 1981, while benefit payments nearly tripled.

But the ongoing recession that is straining the fund also has some gop lawmakers objecting to the bill's tax provisions.

They hope to alter the bill.

(Copyright 2009 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)


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