Budget cuts cause decreased federal unemployment benefits - WLTZ 38 | Columbus Georgia Regional News & Community

Budget cuts cause decreased federal unemployment benefits

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By Sara Belsole

COLUMBUS, GA -    Gail Allen is one of the 8.6% of Georgians who is struggling to find work. She has been unemployment for four months, and now thanks to sequestration, the budget cuts are cutting her unemployment check.

"My weekly income has gone down significantly," Allen says.

The thousands of Georgians who receive Federal Extended Unemployment Compensation will see a 10.7% reduction in their weekly benefits.

"So if a customer receives the maximum number of benefits, $330 a week, that means they are going to see a $35 reduction which equates to $295 a week," Brenda Brown, the Unemployment Insurance Director for the Georgia Department of Labor, says.

"That means I am not going to be able to pay a bill, like lighting or food. It definitely effects the food," Allen says.

More than 61,000 Georgians will be effected when the cuts go into effect March 31st. You will see the cuts in your first check in April.

"They will be notified by mail this week and next week and we will also post the information on our website," Brown says.

The budget cuts also mean the federal government will reduce the state labor department's administrative funding grant by about $3 million.

"We are still evaluating that impact but we want to assure our customers that we will give them the very best of services we can," Brown says.

Allen says she is also trying to do the best she can to find a job, hopefully in the IT field.

"Hopefully I can persevere in the job search and keep a positive attitude and hope that helps along the way," Allen says.

If you're receiving state unemployment benefits, you won't be effected by the budget cuts right now, but if you stay unemployed long enough and are rolled over to the federal extended benefits, you will see that reduction.  

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