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The Scoop

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Coats: GOP senators offer unemployment insurance extension bill

Statement as issued Thursday afternoon by the press secretary of Sen. Dan Coats, R-Ind.:

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Dan Coats (R-Ind.) and Senators Dean Heller (R-Nev.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) and John Hoeven (R-N.D.) today introduced the Responsible Unemployment Compensation Extension Act of 2014 (S. 1931).

This legislation would fully pay for an extension of unemployment insurance benefits for three months. The bill also repeals recent cuts in the military retiree cost-of-living adjustment included in December’s budget agreement.

“Though the Majority Leader has walked away currently from negotiations, we are continuing to work on reasonable legislation based on bipartisan proposals to reform and pay for an extension of unemployment insurance benefits,” said Coats. “I urge the Majority Leader to bring up this bill and allow members the opportunity to have a full debate on amendments.”

The bill is based on a package that the group of senators filed earlier this week as a way to pay for extending unemployment benefits during consideration of the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Extension Act. Following the Senate Majority Leader’s rejection of that alternative, the senators introduced the legislation as a stand-alone bill.

Additional details of the Responsible Unemployment Compensation Act of 2014:

  • Repeals military retirement cost-of-living reduction included in December’s budget agreement.
  • Fully offsets the three-month extension by spreading savings proposed by the Majority across the current 10-year budget window. This legislation exempts Medicare providers from further cuts and includes specific language to ensure that sequestration of defense resources is not increased.
  • Reduces weeks of eligibility for emergency unemployment tiers 1 and 2, which reduces total state and federal unemployment from 73 weeks to 57 weeks.
  • Eliminates overlapping payments for unemployment insurance benefits and Social Security disability benefits.

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