15,000 Nevadans to lose unemployment on Dec. 1 | NevadaAppeal.com

15,000 Nevadans to lose unemployment on Dec. 1

Nearly 15,000 Nevadans will lose weekly benefit checks in December unless Congress decides to extend the federal emergency unemployment compensation benefits program.

And the number will rise by more than 4,000 each week after that until and unless Congress revisits and passes that legislation.

The House of Representatives last week failed to pass legislation to extend those benefits another three months. Without action, they will expire Nov. 30. Congress isn’t in session this week and won’t be back in business until Nov. 29, just a day before the expiration.

The sticking point was the cost of extending those benefits – $12.5 billion. Republican opponents to the extension wanted that cost paid for by shifting the money from existing appropriations in other areas.

Nevada Republican Dean Heller was one of the GOP members to vote for the extension. He said he believes the cost should be paid for, not added, to the federal debt. But he said he feels he must help those out of work in Nevada, the state with the nation’s highest unemployment rate.

Mae Worthy of the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation said there would be an immediate impact to an estimated 10,600 people receiving State Extended Benefits. In addition, some 4,300 people each week would reach the end of their current benefit tier. Without an extended tier to enter, they too would be cut off.

Cindy Jones, administrator of Nevada’s Employment Security Division, said the agency is preparing for the situation and will continue to accept Emergency Unemployment Compensation claims even after the extensions expire. She said recipients should continue to file those claims each week so that, if and when the extended benefit programs are finally restored, the state can process those claims and pay recipients back to the date they were cut off.

In Nevada, there are about 109,000 people receiving benefits, 44,000 in the regular programs and 65,000 in the extended benefit programs.