The Big Story Blog

Jobless Minnesotans facing loss of federal aid

Posted at 9:45 AM on December 15, 2011 by Paul Tosto
Filed under: Jobs and unemployment

Some 43,149 Minnesotans will see their federal unemployment benefits will begin to expire Jan. 1 unless Congress extends them for at least another year, the Star Tribune reports this morning.

The paper writes:

In Minnesota, newly laid-off employees get 26 weeks of regular state-funded unemployment benefits. Those benefits are not at risk.

After state benefits are exhausted, federal emergency unemployment benefits normally would kick in. If Congress does not extend benefits, the three tiers of emergency federal benefits will come to an end. The tiers now provide for 20 weeks, then 14 weeks and then 13 weeks of emergency benefits.

On top of that, Minnesota offers another, and final, 13 weeks of benefits if the state's three-month jobless average stays above 6.5 percent.

Without an extension, all three of the federal tiers will expire. People receiving Minnesota's special 13 weeks of benefits also would stop receiving that check after around Jan. 21.

About Paul Tosto

Paul Tosto

Paul Tosto writes the Big Story Blog for MPR News. He joined the newsroom in 2008 after more than 20 years reporting on education, politics and the economy for news wires and newspapers across the country.

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