Unemployment Insurance



    States sell bonds to repay jobless insurance to feds | by Pamela Prah | November 28, 2011

    Altogether, states still owe $37.6 billion to the federal government that they borrowed when their unemployment insurance trust funds sank to zero.


    Unemployment Insurance Taxes: Options for Program Design and Insolvent Trust Funds

    The Taxpayer Foundation | by Joseph Henchman | November 21, 2011

    Unemployment Insurance reforms should be considered, including eliminating the "firewall" between administrative costs and benefits, reducing cross-subsidies to high-layoff employers, and relying more on face-to-face training and advising. More significant reforms that could be considered include adopting elements of state workers' compensation programs and experimenting with individual accounts.


    $38.25 million sought from state general fund to pay interest on unemployment insurance debt owed to U.S.

    Crain's Detroit Business | by Amy Lane | September 21, 2011

    Michigan's Gov. Snyder has asked lawmakers for $38.25 million from the state's general fund to help pay an interest bill on Michigan's $3.1 billion federal unemployment insurance debt.


    State Unemployment Rates for August 2011

    Unemployment rates in the states were little changed in August 2011, according to figures released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics on September 16, 2011. 


    Jobless benefits for 47,000 in NC start flowing

    Forbes | by Emery Dalesio | June 6, 2011

    A lifeline of extended unemployment benefits on Monday started reaching the first of about 47,000 jobless North Carolina workers caught for seven weeks in a partisan political conflict, but questions persisted about whether Gov. Beverly Perdue had the authority to unfreeze the money.


    Bill linking budget, jobless benefits heads to Gov. Perdue

    The News & Observer | by Lynn Bonner | April 16, 2011

    In rare Saturday session, the state House and Senate held brief meetings to send a controversial bill linking the state budget and unemployment benefits to Gov. Bev Perdue.


    Your State Unemployment Trust is Insolvent

    State Budget Solutions | by Bob Williams, Bob Williams | April 14, 2011

    States had over $48.3 billion in loans from the federal government for unemployment insurance.  States owe the federal government over $500 million in interest on these loans.


    Governors Welcome Funds for Jobless

    The Wall Street Journal | by Sara Murray | February 28, 2011

    The federal government is helping some states shore up their unemployment-insurance funds and President Barack Obama wants to do more, but states in better shape aren't getting the help. Is that fair?


    Unemployment Insurance: State Trust Fund Loans

    The National Conference of State Legislatures | by Jeanne Mejeur and Diana Hinton Noel | January 25, 2011

    The Federal Unemployment Account (FUA) provides for a loan fund for state unemployment programs to ensure a continued flow of benefits during times of economic downturn. 30 states and the U.S. Virgin Islands are currently borrowing to cover unemployment benefits. Five states, Maryland, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Tennessee and Texas, have repaid their loans in full. This report lists the most recent balances of outstanding state loans.



    Medicaid, jobless claims squeeze Nevada budget

    Businessweek | by Sandra Chereb | November 18, 2010

    Changes in the formula to fund Medicaid programs, and interest on money the state borrowed to pay unemployment claims, will cost Nevada about $320 million over the next two years.


    N.J. voters ban use of unemployment, disability funds for budget gaps

    The Star-Ledger | by Susan K. Livio | November 3, 2010

    New Jersey voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment that will ensure the money workers pay into the unemployment and temporary disability funds can't be used to plug future holes in the state budget.


    Budget analyst predicts $20 billion deficit in unemployment fund

    The Fresno Bee | by Dan Walters | October 21, 2010

    The Legislature's budget analyst reported Wednesday that the deficit in the recession-battered Unemployment Insurance Fund "is projected to increase to approximately $20 billion at the end of 2011."


    "Time bomb" ticking in state budget

    The Herald & Review | by Kurt Erickson | September 26, 2010

    Lawmakers to begin budget review next month

    From The Arkansas News | by Rob Moritz | September 13, 2010

    With legislative budget hearings looming, Gov. Mike Beebe is urging budgetary caution even as he ponders another cut in the state sales tax on groceries.  Lawmakers begin three-day-a-week budget hearings next month ahead of the 2011 legislative session, amid signs of life in the state’s economy.


    Unemployment Insurance Program Changes by State in 2010

    ProPublica | by Olga Pierce and Jeff Larson | July 30, 2010

    Due to record high unemployment claims and in many cases poor financial planning, 25 states have run out of funds and been forced to borrow from the federal government, raise taxes or cut benefits. Increasingly, those fiscal woes are landing at the doorstep of business owners and unemployed workers. Employers in 36 states face unemployment insurance tax increases ranging from a few dollars to nearly $1,000 per worker for 2010, and six states have taken steps to cut back or freeze benefits.  This table compares the average unemployment tax in each state.


    Big budget cuts will make for bitter state politics

    The Indianapolis Business Journal | by Peter Schnitzler | July 26, 2010

    But as the reserves dwindle toward zero and the stimulus money disappears, keeping the political debate friendly and the budget in the black will be another challenge entirely.


    State Budget Increases Spending, Adds Nearly 900 Government Workers While Private Sector Continues to Struggle

    The Lincoln Tribune | by Brian Balfour | July 26, 2010

    The state's spending plan increases actual spending over the current fiscal year, adds 864 full-time positions to the state payroll and offers a misguided package of targeted tax breaks intended to help small business job growth.


    Struggling States Seeking More Aid From Washington

    ABC News | by Liz Sidoti | July 11, 2010

    Governors hamstrung by the sluggish economic rebound in their states and bound to balance their own budgets are pressing anew for Washington to step up with more help, some say even if it means adding to the nation's red ink although other disagree.


    Summary of the State of the State of Hawaii

    March 17, 2010

    Summary, commentary, and notes for Gov. Linda Lingle's State of the State address delivered January 25, 2010




    Florida Governor Signs Bill Reforming State Unemployment Compensation Program

    by Cory Eucalitto | July 5, 2011

    Last Monday, Florida Governor Rick Scott signed a bill that broadly reforms Florida’s unemployment compensation program. The new law makes Florida the only state in the country to tie state benefits to unemployment rates.


  • BLOG

    States Bracing to Pay for High Cost of Unemployment Insurance Loans

    by John Stephenson | January 3, 2011

    Starting this year, the states will have to make $1.4 billion in interest payments on those loans. This could mean higher taxes on the struggling business community or further strains on already broken state budgets, but it also presents an opportunity for reform.


    Bankruptcy for the States?

    by John Stephenson | December 13, 2010

    Is the bankruptcy option for states an effective tool to address the looming state fiscal crises?


    State budget bailout on the ropes

    by Jason Mercier | June 21, 2010

    Despite intense lobbying from President Obama and governors, the U.S. Senate has rejected an effort to increase one-time federal Medicaid funds that states across the nation gambled would be approved. 

  • Weekly State Budget Update

    by Bob Williams | April 2, 2010

    Though some states are voicing their concerns about the burdens that they will have to bear as a result of the newly passed healthcare bill, they will likely face financial disaster even without any new federal mandates. The unfunded pension obligations of all units of government has reached a crises level.




    Statement from State Budget Solutions at 2011 Commonwealth Foundation Summit

    Wednesday, January 19, 2011

    Reality based budgeting expert puts "real" PA budget debt at $100 billion