NASWA Advocates State Flexibility for EUC Sequestration

Feb 28, 2013

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On Friday, March 1, 2013 NASWA President Laurie Warner sent a letter to the House and Senate Committees on Appropriations expressing the Association's concerns with how sequestration will affect the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Program (EUC08) and the Extended Benefit (EB) Program. In particular, President Warner urged the Appropriations Committees to provide states with additional flexibility to implement the required benefit reductions in the upcoming Continuing Resolution (CR) for the remainder of FY13.

With almost two million EUC08 claimants, the letter noted that system changes of this nature can take weeks if not months to bring on line in many states. This in turn may lead to other issues, such as overpayments, claimant inquiries overwhelming unemployment insurance call centers, a spike in appeals, and considerable staff time to implement.

Due to a lack of federal funding, most State Workforce Agencies are operating antiquated computer systems, averaging 25 years of age or more. The vast majority of States use systems based on older programming and database technologies which are generally much less flexible and more difficult to change. These computer systems are not easily modified to reduce a claimant's weekly benefit amount as currently anticipated. To read this letter, click the PDF document.