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Unemployment Tax Hike Delayed

March 2nd, 2010 by flanews

The 2010 Florida legislative session began with a victory for businesses and thousands of jobseekers. Lawmakers passed a bill delaying a steep increase in the states unemployment tax. As Whitney Ray tells us, their vote would extend unemployment benefits to 20-thousand Floridians who have run out of money.

With a unanimous vote House lawmakers lightened the burden on struggling businesses fearing a 12 fold increase in the states unemployment tax.

We need this bill, because we need small businesses to succeed in Florida, said Eric Eisnaugle

The tax was scheduled to jump from 8-bucks an employee to more than a hundred in some cases. Small business owners say to pay it they would have to lay off some employees.

The legislation sets up an incremental increase playing out over the next two years. In the mean time the state will barrow 2 billion dollars from the federal government to pay claims. Democrats say the delay is a good start, but boarder changes to the states unemployment system are needed.

This is important, but this in not going to fix the problem. This will just delay the fix, said Democratic State Rep. Ron Saunders.

They want to loosen restrictions to allow more jobseekers to make claims. In a demonstration of compassion House members amended the legislation to allow 20-thousand Floridians whose benefits have run dry to receive eight extra weeks of benefits.

There are some folks who have maximized everything. Were just trying to help them out, said Republican Dave Murzin.

Left on the table is 444 million federal stimulus dollars available to jobseekers.

Posted in Business, State News, Taxes, Unemployment | No Comments »

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