Senate committee looks to restrict eligibility for jobless benefits

March 11, 2013

A state Senate Committee will again this week attempt to vote on a bill putting more responsibility on people filing for jobless benefits. Representative Warren Petersen's bill would require workers to submit documents, if the employer tells DES the worker quit or abandoned the position. Amy Shinko says the bill would help her claims firm get a handle on people who know how to milk the unemployment insurance system.

“The claimant works for one hour, goes to the bathroom, never comes back, files a claim—you are eligible,” Shinko said. “The claimant works for three days, is a no call, no show, files a claim—you are eligible.”

But, the measure's opponents say it violates federal labor laws. And, they say ex-employees get nothing in writing to prove they're eligible for benefits.

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