Federal budget reductions called “sequestration” are forcing a 10.7 percent cut in extended unemployment benefits for thousands of idled Idaho workers – at least through September.
In March, the Idaho Department of Labor notified more than 6,000 extended benefit claimants their benefit payments and remaining extension balance will both be reduced by 10.7 percent. Weekly extended benefit payment reductions began with the payment for the week of March 31 and run through the week of Sept. 22.
Here are answers to questions you might have:
What will happen to my weekly payments?
Your weekly benefit amount will be reduced by by 10.7%. For example, if your current weekly benefit amount is $200, it will be reduced to $178.00.
How will I know how much money I have available in extended benefits and what my new weekly benefit amount will be?
On or around March 31, 2013, you should have received a letter notifying you of your reduced weekly benefit amount and your remaining extension balance.
Does this mean my extended benefits will be cut by 21.4 percent?
Not necessarily. Each reduction will be made separately. The total impact will depend on your individual circumstances and how long you have been on extended benefits. If you’ve been on extended benefits longer you will see a smaller reduction than if you had just enrolled.
Will my initial extended benefit amount be cut by 10.7 percent or just what I have left?
Only your remaining balance will be reduced by 10.7 percent. For example, if you received $1,000 in e xtension benefits and have $200 left, your remaining balance of $200 will be reduced by 10.7 percent, leaving you with about $178.
Will my 10.7 percent reduction ever be restored?
No. The U.S. Department of Labor has instructed us to implement a budget cut to extended benefits that will not be restored.