About 30,000 Tennesseans will lose their unemployment benefits
when a federal program ends next week, state labor officials said Friday.
possible extension of those benefits is one of the many topics that are
part of the negotiations in Washington over the so-called "fiscal
cliff," a combination of tax changes and spending cuts that are set to
take effect in 2013.
Thousands of Tennesseans are receiving
extended unemployment benefits under the federal Emergency Unemployment
Compensation program, which is set to expire on Wednesday. The program
pays benefits to those who have exhausted their state benefits, which
can last up to 26 weeks in Tennessee.
This week is the last
payable week under the federal program, with final checks going out next
week. After that, jobless benefits will be capped at 26 weeks in
Although the federal program has been amended or
extended 10 times since it was enacted in 2008, neither Congress nor the
Obama administration have moved to continue it.
Karla Davis, Tennessee's labor commissioner, urged those losing their benefits to use the state's jobs website (www.jobs4tn.gov) and visit a state career center for help finding work.