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Senate Approves Delay of Business Tax Increase to Pay for Unemployed

January 13, 2010

The Indiana Senate approved a bill Tuesday that would delay until January 2011 an increase in the amount of money going into the state unemployment compensation fund from mandatory business and employee paycheck contributions. The bill, as introduced by Republican Brandt Hershman, attempts to delay the tax increase that provides money for unemployed Hoosiers. Hershman says that’s because the increase comes at a bad time for businesses. But an amendment to the bill puts in place a new procedure requiring that benefits to former employees stop until both employer and employee have a hearing before an administrative law judge. Opponents of the provision, like Democrat Timothy Skinner, say that amendment was a deal breaker.

“Because the bill was changed, I am also going to have to change my support of this bill altogether. And I will be voting no.”

Despite the change in support, the Senate passed the measure 33 to 17, and it now goes to the House. At the start of 2009, the state had borrowed over 1-point-5 billion dollars from the federal government to keep the unemployment fund afloat.

-Scott Leadingham

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