Emergency Extended Unemployment Compensation Act will benefit 3.8 million Americans

Washington, D.C. – (June 12, 2008)  Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson today joined a bipartisan majority of her colleagues in the House of Representatives to vote for H.R. 5749, the Emergency Extended Unemployment Compensation Act.  The legislation will immediately provide up to 13 weeks of extended unemployment benefits to jobless workers in every state.  It passed the House by a vote of 274-137.

“People want to work, but in this economy, the jobs just aren’t there,” Congresswoman Johnson said.  “And with the rising costs of food, gas, and health care, it is becoming impossible for families to make ends meet.  This legislation will provide needed benefits to 3.8 million unemployed workers immediately, and I was proud to support it.”

The U.S. economy has lost jobs for five consecutive months and in May saw the largest one-month increase in the unemployment rate in over 20 years.  There are 1.5 million workers who are “long-term” unemployed, meaning they have been jobless for over six months.

The Emergency Extended Unemployment Compensation Act will provide up to 13 weeks of extended unemployment benefits in every state to workers exhausting the 26 weeks of regular unemployment benefits.  In states with unemployment rates of six percent or higher, an additional 13 weeks of benefits will be made available.  The benefits will be paid out of the federal unemployment trust funds, which currently have more than $35 billion in reserves, more than enough to cover the cost of the benefits extension.


U.S. Representative Eddie Bernice Johnson is the highest-ranking Texan on the House Committee on Transportation & Infrastructure and a senior member of the Science Committee. She represents the 30th Congressional District of Texas, which, includes Downtown Dallas, Fair Park, Oak Lawn, Old East Dallas, Pleasant Grove, & South Oak Cliff; all of Balch Springs, DeSoto, Hutchins, Lancaster & Wilmer and parts of Cedar Hill, Duncanville, Ferris, Glenn Heights and Ovilla.

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