Unemployed challenge state leaders to live off $350 a week

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Submitted: Thu, 02/07/2013 - 9:29pm
Updated: Fri, 02/08/2013 - 1:52pm

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Some political activists want some state leaders to put their money where their mouth is. At a rally in Wilmington today the group said the governor and other Republican leaders should try to live on the amount they want the state to pay the unemployed.

The challenge comes after a bill filed in the legislature that would cut North Carolina unemployment benefits as much as 60 percent.

Action NC and its members are upset about the bill that cuts the maximum benefits paid to unemployed workers from $535 a week to $350. It would also reduce the maximum weeks of benefits from 26 to a sliding scale of between 12 and 20 weeks.

Action NC’s Kevin Rogers says these are drastic cuts for those who need the money to survive.

“The governor gave his cabinet secretaries huge pay raises so they could ‘afford to live.’ Governor, if your cabinet can’t afford to live on more than $120,000 a year, how the heck are the rest of us supposed to live on less than $15,000 a year?” Rogers said.

Protestor Patrick Varnam has his own challenge for Gov. McCrory and lawmakers who support the bill.

“I challenge them not for a week. Every one of them that voted for it, they need to freeze their assets,” Varnam said. “Make sure their buddies can’t give them no backdoor money and make them live on $350 a week for six months. They’ll lose everything they got.”

Among the group’s targets is Sen. Thom Goolsby. The New Hanover County Republican says the change is needed because of the state needs to repay $2.5 billion it borrowed from the federal government.

“I would ask the people to please read the law and see the condition that the Democrats left us in after not funding unemployment insurance adequately, and this has left us in a crisis in the state,” Goolsby said in a phone interview from Raleigh.

Goolsby says the cuts will help pay that debt off by 2015 instead of 2018.

The bill has passed through committee and is headed for the full Senate.


  • helping others says:

    The $ given to you per week is not supposed to support you for the rest of your life. You are to take some RESPONSIBILITY and find a job. Yes, that’s right, FIND A JOB. ANY JOB. When you decide to take responsibility, REALLY take responsibility for your circumstances, you will then become powerful and become someone that produces for themselves and society.
    Whatever amount they decide to give, should ALWAYS have an ending point. Here’s a thought, $1,000 first week, $900 second week, $800 third week, $700 4th week, $600 5th week etc…until week 10 $100 and then THATS IT. NO more. You want incentive, that’s incentive, You want a deterrent, there it is. To reward people to NOT be productive is just plain STUPID!

  • Rick Johnston says:

    I have been applying to about 25 to thirty jobs a week for 5 months. I normally make 27.00 an hour as maintenance mech.You must be overly secure in your job situation. the company I used to work for has lay-offs on average of about every 20 months I got laid off 5 times in 8 years. sure I could find a job no PROBLEMO! I just can’t keep this home and pay for food for 8 dollars an hour. I have never been fired and I have good skills and work background, I dont use any drugs I dont drink, smoke or miss work being sick. after looking at my job search history 650 job apps in five months getting an acceptable paying is about (100 times) more difficult than your imagination. we drive 9 year old cars – paid off. and can just barley scratch by if I collect 522.00 a week on unemployment. Hey cheer up I just got a JOB!! 15.00 dollars a hour 3rd shift a 1 hour drive from home. does it get any better? WAKE UP GENIOUS jobs that put people off unemployment put them near the poverty level of life. these new benefits are going to crush hard working good people and the economy wont benefit from it also. our politicians and legislators have crapped the bed on this one — watch and see.

  • Diane says:

    Try living in Wisconsin I get $304.00 a week and max is like under $400.00. Cost of living is higher here also.

  • SurfCityTom says:

    I respect your right to have a dissenting opinion; just as you respect my right to also disagree.

    Whether either of us agrees, this is going to happen and be effective 07/01/2013.

    Those who are going to be affected have 2 options.

    Plan now for what is going to happen; take steps and maybe consider a job slightly below what they had when they became unemployed.

    Or do nothing and feel the hammer come down around mid-November.

    Like it or not, that is reality.

    ESC force them out the door?? That’s a joke. Unlike years past when you actually went to the ESC office; provided proof of your job search; and got a check. Now it’s all done online. No proof required; no identifcation required as to where you might have applied. And your funds are direct deposited without the need to get off the sofa.

    IN addition to fast food, I also noted Walmart, Lowes, and the construction industry west of I-95.

    Vog, I hear what you say; but the reality is the changes are coming whether anyone approves or not.

  • Vog46 says:

    You are assuming your rep will listen.
    Good luck with that. They are blinded by ideology and adherence to party doctrine. We just happen to be in an era of GOP ideology so anyone talking to a GOP rep will get the “blank look” – which is exactly what I got from a Dem rep when talking about tax cuts a couple of years back.
    Its way too easy to say “talk to your rep” when your party is in charge and 99% of the electorate do not belong to groups that hold press conferences to rail against certain government policies.
    But you know that…….


  • Vog46 says:

    I think?
    The post I responded to was a BRUTAL Op-Ed piece from the Charlotte N&O about McCrory and the Legislature’s initial economic packages covering unemployment and Medicaid.
    Here’s one quote:
    “The state has serious financial challenges. So far, McCrory and Republicans in the legislature are making them worse.”
    Of course some of this was caused by previous Dem legislators and governors.

    It is widely anticipated that unemployment will rise when the Januray numbers are released (in March I believe). Again 483,000+ are unemployed and 54 out of 100 counties have unemployment rates t 10% or above.
    If unemployment goes up another 9% to say 527,000 we have a problem.
    McCrory beat Dalton by 510,000 votes (I may be off just a little).
    With some newspapers already turning against both the Gov and the Legislature (I include the CNO and STar News in that group) is the GOP committing political suicide?
    Will the unemployed and Medicaid recipients rise up and actually vote in the next election along with other Democrats?
    Will it be another 100 years before we hear from the GOP again?
    Just weeks after being inaugurated we’re hearing this:
    “The state has serious financial challenges. So far, McCrory and Republicans in the legislature are making them worse.”
    From his home town newspaper no less


  • GuestTeeDuffer says:

    TLS, I have been through the same mess as you and I regret that you are going through hard times. I haven’t figured out whether Surf City Tom is from a parallel universe or communes with imaginary friends. In Tom’s world there is ample employment for all of us. Remember, we all have the right to work, FOR LESS.

  • Vog46 says:

    I did not mention the Constitution because anyone with half a brain knows that unemployment insurance is not required or mentioned. That is legislated and the GOP has the right to do what they’re doing.
    And while it’s OK to say you drive all over and every fast food place is hiring – that is anecdotal and comes nowhere near accurate and you and I both know that.
    I suppose you want to concentrate on Shoninger because you can’t refute my post with evidence – and that’s fine.
    I’m not looking to argue – but the question remains – if the jobs are there ESC would be pushing people into them. The jobs aren’t there.
    No my point was macro economics in nature as I believe that doing this will cause conditions to worsen, not get better. If spending is held back not only will those fast food jobs dry up – but the sales tax revenues the GOP are hoping for to give the Corporate buddies a break on will not be enough to balance the budget.
    It will be interesting to watch but I will disagree as civilly as I can each and every time it’s brought up.
    McCrory has no job creation record yet – this initial act may prevent him from having a good one.
    Respectfully Submitted

  • Vog46 says:

    I tend to agree with Tom a lot too.
    In this case though there are several other factors to consider, but I am currently researching my information, as all I have is anecdotal evidence right now and I prefer to discuss numbers.
    Tom makes me look things up – proving you learn more from people you may disagree with……
    Civil disagreement is far more entertaining then hurling labels at each other like “Liberal” or “gun toting conservative”….


  • Guest857 says:

    Though I usually agree with Tom, you are spot on this one Vog. How “Americans” can support giving the Chi-coms our jobs and then cut the throat of less fortunate Americans is beyond me.

  • Vog46 says:

    My objection to the cutback in UI is not based upon the bill itself but the timing. In the link I posted above unemployment is RISING and this bill that’s supposed to REDUCE the burden may end up COSTING the state more.
    The number of counties with a rate above 10% has risen by 12 to 56 out of 100 counties.
    As I told my legislator – cut the corporate tax FIRST – lets see if it improves the jobs numbers – then – as the number is rising – then cut back on UI benefits that way, the improving economy lessens the blow of taking this much money out of the states economy.
    By cutting back on UI first while unemployment is getting worse – you push the states economy back into a recession. This then puts you’re next move (Cutting corporate taxes and raising the sales or other consumption taxes) in jeopardy as revenues will be falling. Demand will also fall – possible accelerating unemployment.
    McCrory would then be faced in year two and three of his Governorship of dealing with a recessionary economy.
    So, what will the state GOP run on then? Their ban on abortion? They’re ability to shut down sweepstakes businesses?

    I hope I’m wrong but this one move alone could derail his governorship and possibly GOP control of the legislature.


  • Vog46 says:

    ESC does not keep total jobs available data or they don’t release it. But I can tell you this – NH County has very limited job opportunities yet there are 25,000 unemployed in the Wimington metro area (which does include SOME of Brunswick county).
    The Legislature put the cart before the horse by doing things this way. Of course if my macro economic thought process is right it will be a moot point because IF they take $225M out of the NC economy as the SNO indicates then McCrory will face a recessionary economy as opposed to an albeit recovering economy.
    I’m all for cutting corporate taxes to make it “less risky to hire” – but as a business man you know that businesses don’t hire just because they’re profitable they hire due to increased business or increased demand. People spend money when it’s less risky to spend, ie when they have money.
    Taking $225M out of our fragile economy right now might not be the smartest thing to do.
    There are NOT ENOUGH jobs even a “step below” to take all unemployed off the unemployment system. Offer PROOF that they’re there in numbers sufficient to impact unemployment.
    Show me where an employer will hire JUST BECAUSE HE’S GOT PROFITS??????? Like you – I’ve hired people myself and NEVER just because I could. (This is another separate argument – I know).
    Talk to a rep at ESC if you can and ask how many county residents are unemployed versus how many jobs are available in your county – with the exception of Onslow – most counties do not have enough jobs.


  • Vog46 says:

    Now we can talk about what it will cost NC both politically and monetarily.
    I expected the Star News to be anti – McCrory.
    But this kinda floored me:


    N.C. Legislature is making an expensive point

    GOP’s snub of billions in federal money is counterproductive

    Posted: Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013
    The legislature’s effort to save the state money is starting to cost the state a boatload of money.

    The N.C. Senate passed a bill Tuesday that overhauls the state’s system for paying benefits to unemployed workers. That needed tackling, but the way the legislature did it unnecessarily costs the state $780 million from the federal government. Lawmakers could have made all the changes they did and still receive the $780 million by delaying them for just six months.

    Gov. Pat McCrory, meanwhile, said Tuesday that he does not want the federal government to pay 100 percent of health insurance costs for 500,000 poor North Carolinians. The House could vote as soon as Wednesday to pass a bill that turns down $2 billion in federal money per year for three years, and billions more in the years after that.

    Um, ladies and gentlemen of the House and Senate, could you stop “saving” us so much money?

    A wrong-headed fix

    If McCrory signs the unemployment bill, as expected, it takes effect July 1. Republican senators defeated an amendment on party lines that would have pushed the effective date to Jan. 1. That triggers a federal law that cuts off federal benefits to 170,000 North Carolinians worth $780 million. That’s money they’d have spent on groceries, the rent or mortgage, and other basic needs. Pulling that much money out of the state’s economy can only hurt consumer spending and job creation.

    To be sure, at $2.5 billion, North Carolina has the third-largest debt to the federal government for unemployment benefits. The current system is unsustainable. The problem came about because the state cut taxes on employers and ramped up benefits in the good times. Those changes couldn’t withstand the recession.

    The fix, then, should be balanced. But about two-thirds of the savings in this bill come from cutting benefits, the legislature’s fiscal experts say. The unemployed are shouldering the burden by a two-to-one margin.

    Perhaps most notable: Once the debt is repaid within three years, employers’ taxes drop back down to today’s levels, but the benefit cuts remain.

    All of that makes this solution flawed. And turning down $780 million from outside the state is senseless.

    Saving money with Medicaid

    McCrory said Tuesday “it would be unfair to the taxpayers” to expand Medicaid when the state’s system is plagued with administrative problems. But the expansion he and the legislature reject would be funded 100 percent by the federal government for three years before phasing down to 90 percent after that.

    The state would be better off if McCrory would go about fixing the problems in Medicaid administration while also accepting the many billions to cover low-income residents starting Jan. 1, 2014. Without that federal money, those residents will go to the emergency room or forego care altogether – both of which will cost the state in the short and long run.

    The state has serious financial challenges. So far, McCrory and Republicans in the legislature are making them worse.

    It would appear as though his home town newspaper is even questioning his actions. Not being a long term reader of the CNO I couldn’t tell you if it’s a change of heart or not.

    And yes again, for the record:
    I have no dog in this fight
    I have contacted my legislators, their leaders and the Governor (Old folks tend to do that sort of thing)
    I disagree with the timing of this not the actual bill(although I have offered alternatives – possible amendments).
    The editorial does point out quite succinctly the problem from the “Democratic past” – they reduced taxes and increased benefits – never thinking -NEVER – that we’d have another 1939 type event. This goes along quite nicely with previous statement we have made; that politicians have never met a spending program they didn’t like nor a tax cut they didn’t like.
    Again – let Pat’s tax plan (Which should come first) do it’s thing. If successful it will create the jobs necessary for the unemployed to get. This will automatically increase revenue into the NC UI Trust Fund.
    I think the next couple of months should prove very interesting.


  • John Allen says:

    Sure Walmart is hiring. One thing he fails to understand is 80% of their employees qualify for food stamps and medicaid. The average family with one child could not began to survive on any of the fast food or Walmart type job. These jobs are fine for someone that is just getting out of High School and living at home and driving a car that was given to them by their parents. I would take the unemployment and continue to look for a job that would support my family. Guess what that is what unemployment is designed to do. Get you by until you can get another job. Not to live off of forever. If any family could live well on unemployment I would like to know how? Every penny paid to people on unemployment is spent on basic survival. Not going out to eat everyday. It goes back into the economy unlike tax breaks that are socked away for a grand vacation. I agree with you Tom whole heartily. The pure greed in this country is out of control and when a state gets into financial trouble the first place they look is to the ones with the smallest voice. The poor they never look to the ones that can afford to pay a little more to help their fellow man. Cut unemployment please, i’m sure they caused these financial problems.

  • SurfCityTom says:

    I did not make the decision. I had no imput on the decision making process other than to express my opinion to my Legislators.

    You have 2 options.

    Cry, whine, and do nothing.

    OR, do more than hold press conferences. Get the House and Senate members who represent you to understand your position.

    It’s going to happen.

    Face Reality.

  • SurfCityTom says:

    opinions differ.

    And I see you did not address the question on the Bill of Rights or the Constituiton.

    As to jobs, and I travel throughout NC on business, I can not drive by a WalMart, Lowes, or any fast food extablishment which is not hiring. Go west of I-95, construction firms are hiring.

    The problem is that too many have become comfortable on unemployment and have ceased seeking work.

    This is intended to stem that.

    While you and I, and others make our voices heard, my guess is that too many will not even pick up the phone and call their legislator.

    One of the beautues in this country, opinions can differ. I’m not the one to debate the issue with VOG. I have my beliefs and I guess they differ from yours.

    Why don’t we focus on Shoninger and his frozen igloo project. I’m interested in knowing just what state and local incemtives he’s applied for. I hope the powers that be have a jaundiced eye when they look at anything he proposes. The “deal” already notes there will be no lease payments by him on the land lease during the first 4 years. What else is he seeking?

    And remember he’s only “projecting” 110 jobs. Sounds like much the same approach as the ballpark.

  • Vog46 says:

    Here’s some reality for you:


    “The number of people unemployed increased 6,997 to 438,864 over the month, and decreased 45,380
    over the year.”

    Please explain where the 438,864 jobs are. These are December figures – sorry it’s the latest they’ve got.

    Yeah, I KNOW it’s going to happen, and I have no skin in this game as I paid my dues already but what the Legislature is doing will ruin NC’s economy.
    So lets assume these folks have to work two jobs to get by – where’s the MILLION jobs Tom?
    It’s way too easy for anyone to say “just find a job” especially when YOU may have one yourself but it only displays ones ignorance of the situation.
    NC’s problems are not a result of Bev’s initiatives alone either (You KNOW that). Our debt based society/economy shut down when lending dried up. It was so bad we had to bail out the banks that did the lending – fearful they would fail.
    We are only now seeing any sort of recovery.
    This bill puts a HUGE burden on McCrory to come up with initiatives and programs to grow jobs rapidly as he’s taking way too much out of the economy with this bill and there’s not enough jobs to replace it with – according to the ESC’s own figures.
    Now THAT’S a reality for yah.


  • Vog46 says:

    Not disagreeing with you but your glibness regarding this is startling:
    “And it’s pretty clear most would rather whine and take slaps at me rather than get some training or get out and start looking for a job.”

    You can rant all you want about the people collecting but where’s the 483,000 jobs Tom?

    And yeah it IS coming.
    And yeah we DID have recessions before, although this one ranked second to 1938 and far out weighed Reagans in depth.
    But lets keep the focus to NC as this law ONLY impacts NC (But has garnered national press). If it was good law it would have been proposed already even by the previous Republican Minority members. It wasn’t – so why wait till now? McCrory himself said he liked it for 2014 why the push up of one year to include it now? Why the continued misinformation about paying back (unnecessarily) a “loan” that is basically stabilizing our UI Trust fund?
    Ad if you looked at my posts yo would see that my concern here is political – that after 100 years of Dem rule the GOP will get 4 years then get run out of town? They’ve made some bone headed moves – totally eliminating all board memberships so the boards can have the governors imprint on them? Pay raises for appointees – 1000 appointees – appointtees with conflicts of interest – now this action taking $225M out of NC’s economy?
    Where’s the thought? the research?
    I’m NOT ready to write Pat off just yet because some of this is the legislature not the Administration.
    I just don’t remember Bev being this bad just weeks into her term. And she inherited a bad economy. Pat inherited an improving economy but seems to be doing all he can to stall it out. Where’s the fiscal management? Now Rabon will write tax changes. I can’t wait to see this.
    And yes you never said you approve of it all – in fact you even went so far as to say you’d make out as a businessman with the proposed elimination of the corporate tax (see – I do read your posts).
    I would LOVE to see Pat throttle the Legislature down a peg or two.
    The question is – will he?

  • SurfCityTom says:

    you’re out of tune with the topic.

    It’s going to happen. Like it or not, the House has passed the bill; the Senate will vote within the week.

    Rather than ask all of those metaphysical questions, which by the way bring no solutions to the table, why not propose some action?

    Gosh, maybe lead a march to Rabon’s office or Ghoolsby’s office. They’re the local Senators; they’ll be the ones voting.

    Frankly VOG, I did not rant.

    I noted the inevitable freight train is coming down the tracks.

    I suggest affected people need to take some action or be hit by the speeding train.

    You want to get into “wouldn’t it be nice if” discussions. I have not seen the Beach Boys on a concert tour in this area.

    Face the truth VOG, it’s coming.

    Affected Folks can continue the flowery debates and rhetorical questions.

    And they can let the train run over them.

    Or they can take some action.

    It’s that simple.

    That ends my comments on a topic which is already on a course for July 1.

  • TLS says:

    It’s so easy for you to say go and get a job at Walmart or in fast food. I have tried and I am overqualified and am not considered. I applied for a job in customer service which was low paying and I was highly qualified and was told there were over 200 applicants for the same job that only 1 person would get. I didn’t even get an interview. Our state is at 9% unemployment and that is because there are not jobs for everyone and people are still being laid off. If you think in 20 weeks jobs will magically fall from the sky and everyone who is receiving unemployment will have one you are nuts. There will be people losing their homes, more crime when people have to resort to anything in order to survive and our state will have more homeless out on the street. Our governor and Republican legislature are fools and cruel ones at that if they think this will solve the problem and apparently you are too. Unless you are in the situation you have no clue. I have been laid off twice in the past 4 years and it is not easy finding a job. I have been looking every day and have been turned down for things I am highly qualified for. Perhaps it is my age since I am over 50? I don’t know. I am now taking classes to start a new profession however they will take me over a year to complete so I may have to drop them when my unemployment ends.

  • Vog46 says:

    I believe that the repayment of the “loan” will not take place as fast as this law claims it will be. Why?
    Simply put – employer’s reaction to Obama Care.
    Follow along.
    Many employers are cutting hours so as to get their employees below the 30 hour threshold by which the employer has to provide healthcare coverage. (The administration anticipated this I believe).
    OK – NC Unemployment law states that employees contribute to a fund for UI Bennys (their account). Their formula is complicated by you take the highest 3 quarters, multiply by 8……..and you come up with an amount. Lets assume for ease of thought that the amount is 26 weeks at $500 or $13,000.
    My daughter works in an industry that is cutting back hours on thousands of NC managers to avoid paying for healthcare. The employees are taking a 25% pay cut.
    Under NC GS 96-12 those employees are entitled to partial unemployment bennys of say $150/week. How long do they collect? NOT 26 weeks – they collect until their account is drained. $1300/$150 = 86 weeks.
    They collect for 86 weeks.
    But here’s the BEST part. They are still working so they are contributing to the their UI fund account rebuilding it as they drain it.
    See the problem here?
    We are subsidizing salaries and continuously draining the NC UI Trust fund.
    My daughter has had to “attend” 15 phone hearings about this and the company has lost all 15 cases spread over 3 counties. They are no longer contesting the hourly cutbacks eligibility for UI cases.
    So the argument that we will pay this back in 18 months is wrong. The “loan” itself keeps the NC Trust fund solvent (When NC drained their account the Feds guaranteed the money for the first 26 weeks. ALL EXTENSIONS ARE PAID BY THE FEDS, IN TOTAL.)
    So McCrory will cut off bennys for full time unemployed in an attempt to pay back a loan AHEAD of time (unnecessarily) and NC will continuously be borrowing from the FEDs.
    Now – what happens IF – my crystal ball is right and the NC economy shrinks? Full time Unemployment rises,part time Unemployment rises – the trust fund gets depleted, again and again. Deeper and deeper.
    McCrory HAS to create jobs so that more people pay into the NC UI Trust Fund. That reduces borrowing.
    Folks Obamacare and the medicaid expansion are thinly veiled efforts to get more people on government healthcare. The business reaction to Obamacare was EXACTLY what was expected – but was unexpected from a UI standpoint. Businesses said “OH good there’s a way NOT to have to offer medical insurance.”
    Nationalized health care is DESIRED by businesses – it would be a huge break for businesses.

    But in cutting back hours we saw businesses TRUE feelings about health care coverage and we now can see why the efforts of the legislature may be misguided.
    McCrory couldn’t control this – but if he knew he wouldn’t be able to pay off this “debt” he may have been better off to keep this money in our economy.


  • SurfCityTom says:

    it appears everyone, including you, needs to improve their reading skills.

    Where, in any comment, did I say I agreed with it? Please point it out.

    I feel the Governor made a foolish blunder giving the members of the Council of State an 8% raise at the same time the Legislature is fixing this issue.

    But the fact remains, this is coming. Why, pray tell, do people including you want to debate me on this issue?

    It’s coming. The unemployed can either wait until the checks stop coming or they can take action.

    It’s that simple; and no amount of debate or slurs thrown my way will change the inevitable.

    And it’s pretty clear most would rather whine and take slaps at me rather than get some training or get out and start looking for a job.

    When the benefits end, that $480 per week from an entry level job may look pretty good to someone with a family.

    Oh, to all those, including you VOG, who point to the potential ramifications, remember.

    We had a depression in the 1930s; millions lost their jobs and homes; but society survived. Big Recession during Eisnehower’s administration; lost homes, jobs and families; but society survived. A bit of a recession during the Regan administration; lost homes and jobs; but society survived.

    It seems like most posters here are more concerned with posting and trying to put me in my place than survival.

  • Guest, Just Another says:

    How about we challenge them to get a job and quit living off of us. If they have enough gumption to make this an issue, then put that effort to good use and GET A JOB!

  • TLS says:

    We have contributed to unemployment while working and we pay taxes too. So quit the we are living off you stuff. We aren’t. Maybe you will lose your job someday and if you do perhaps you should refuse unemployment insurance since you are so against it.

  • Dewayne says:

    The $350 dollar challenge is a dumb idea. Those who voted all have jobs! Only in America does the govt say…”even though you don’t have a job…we will still give you $1,400.00 a month’ and only in America would people still complain about free money! Get a life and job and quit your whining and complaining.

  • RealityStrikes says:

    That money the Government “so called” “gives” people on unemployment is not a gift, and it’s not “given”. The very people that collect unemployment have been able to collect it due to paying their “fair share” into it. If you think it’s so “easy” for these people to find jobs. Then I challenge you. Start helping people on unemployment find jobs. I bet you find it a challenge these days. I bet our government would be a whole lot poorer if all these people on unemployment were able to collect back everything they paid into social security,which is also their “right” to collect.Yet, our government keeps dipping into for other reasons. Unless you can hire all the people on unemployment, or help them get jobs, don’t be telling people to do something near impossible in a recession economy where nothing is certain.

  • John says:

    I guess it is too much to ask to have some money saved up to fall back on if you do lose your job, rather than relying solely on unemployment compensation. Unemployment is not there to pay for all your bills should you lose your job, it is meant to assist.
    But instead everyone has to have that brand new car, flat screen tv’s, iphone’s etc….rather than putting a few bucks aside. Instead we rely on the government to bail us out whenever the going gets tough. Its sad really. There is no more personal responsibility in our society anymore. Everything is always someone elses fault and then when something goes wrong we depend on someone else to bail us out.

  • Vog46 says:

    At maximum benefit ($522 or so) an unmployed worker can also work part time and make up to $106/week without affecting their benefit.
    They are reducing max benny to $350, a different of $172 per week. I suggested to my Rep/St Sen that the allowable earnings be raised to ($106 + $172 or $278). I explained that this would KEEP $225M in the state economy AND allow those employers needing part timers to fill those jobs with the unemployed. This would FILL part time job slots that don’t have medical benefits which would be beneficial to businesses. The wages earned ($278) would be UI taxed as all wages are which would help the UI Trust fund.
    My Rep thought that this might be beneficial but obviously it was not considered. It is helpful when talking to your State Rep and Senator to have ideas to share not just gripes and moaning and groaning.
    Like Tom, I wish that more people would contact their reps in the State House.


  • SurfCityTom says:

    ABC News had a piece on the 7:00 AM portion noting that 49% of working Americans are living paycheck to paycheck.

    I guess they would Blame Bush for that.

    A person can look in the mirror and identify the starting point for personal responsibility.

    But the majority will not.

  • Vog46 says:

    Its us pure and simple.
    Of course businesses do NOT want to discourage this type of non saving behavior. As I stated to Tom and has been pointed out repeatedly here we are a debt based society/economy and 70% of our economy is dependent upon consumer spending.
    When consumers stop spending the economy goes in the toilet, and American businesses, along with State and Federal budgets – suffer. This is why I’m leery of basing our state budget on consumption tax(s). It’s also why I’m against the cuts to the UI program for now.
    Businesses (for the most part) count on us spending – if we don’t, they don’t either.
    We can blame ourselves and should but don’t forget – then you have the political class at all levels of government who:
    A – Never met a program they didn’t want to spend money on and
    B – Never saw a tax cut they didn’t like…..


  • Guest CommonTater says:

    No…. What kind of silly statement is that? So you are saying if I’m not paid what I think I’m worth then I will show you and not work? LMAO… kidding right? Is that what you are doing?

  • hotshot says:

    I agree there are jobs out there for them — they just will not take them — I would clean toilets if that is what it would take to support my family. some people think they are to good to do that.

  • Guest CommonTater says:

    It’s not supposed to be a d@mn retirement fund! If it was engineered so you wouldn’t have to work what do you suppose would happen? There are already enough entitlement programs causing that problem as it is. Think!! Some people….. and they walk among us…. Good grief!!

  • Travis says:

    So you think entitlements exceeding private compensation means that we have to cut entitlement payments. Did it ever occur to you that it might mean we have to increase compensation so that it looks more appealing than staying unemployed?

  • Ed Baxley says:

    Hey Thom, you are a attorney, sue the dems that screwed us. I got layed off last month and I shouldnt have to loose my home because of a bunch of lying , theifing politicians. I will reconsider my conservitive voting history if it really doesnt make a differance, and apparently it doesnt. I might not have gas mney to look for a job after this wonderful decision you all have made, but I have a large friends list on the internet and I will use whatever means nessasary to punish those that failed to keep our best interest first. I am ashamed at this point that I am a registered republican. But unlike the recent decisions by you and your co-hearts, I can change that. Now, go eat a big steak for dinner and I’ll open a can of pork and beans.

  • GuestTeeDuffer says:

    Ed, you may be interested in this page seeing that you have a large internet friends following: US Uncut https://www.facebook.com/usauncut

    I am very sorry about your job loss and wish you well in your search.

  • SurfCityTom says:

    all they wish. This bill wil pass; be signed by the GOvernor; and be in effect 07/01/2013.

    As several senior members of the legislature noted, this is not an attempt to cause pain for the unemployed. It’s intended to empower and encourage them to get jobs.

    So along about mid November, the benefits will end for many; we’ll see if that empowers them to go to work.

    Knowing that many employers will restrict work hours to 30 per week thanks to Obamacare, if one works 30 hours @ $8.00 per hour, that’s $240; double down and work 60 hours with 2 jobs and you have $480.

    I’m still waiting for anyone who supports long term unemployment to point to a section in the Constitution or Bill of Rights which gaurantees life long payments not to work. And free health care; and free cell phones.

    You can not; those entitlements are not referred to anywhere.

    Accept what’s coming and deal with it. Have you contacted your Legislators, in writing or by email, to express your positions? Likely not too many have. Easier for this group to hold press conferences which accomplish nothing.

  • Vog46 says:

    “It’s intended to empower and encourage them to get jobs.”
    What jobs? Of course ANYONE who believes that we are an entitlement society believes that there’s jobs out there to be had. Please show us where they are. Yes this may encourage some to get off their butts but empowers? No – it does nothing of the sort.Just read H4 V3 and it does nothing but cut benefits.

    “if one works 30 hours @ $8.00 per hour, that’s $240; double down and work 60 hours with 2 jobs and you have $480.”
    Again now you are doubling down on your the jobs are out there argument. Where are these 2 million part time jobs that 1 million can apply for? Do we give credit to good ‘ol Bev for creating these jobs?

    ” which guarantees life long payments not to work.”
    Oh my – unemployment has never been permanent. Even now its 99 weeks(?) worth. That hardly seems permanent to me.

    “Have you contacted your Legislators, in writing or by email, to express your positions?”
    I do this regularly along with my U.S. Rep and Senators.
    I think Pat had the right idea during his campaign – do it in 2014.
    When benny’s get cut unemployment will fall – not because he created jobs but because the people dropped off the dole. When spending diminishes company’s will lay off more folks and business expansion will stop.
    It will be an interesting thing to watch.
    But I caution anyone who’s into economics to look at Ireland. I can remember Kudlow railing about how we need to be like Ireland and lower corporate taxes to simulate job growth. In 2007 unemployment was 4%. Funny thing is its now 14.2% and been that way since 2009 or so. Hows that corporate rate working out for you Ireland? Bailed out by the central bank. In 2010 their deficit (JUST THE DEFICIT – not total debt, was 35% of GDP). Thank goodness things are improving – their government bonds are junk. Greece is even worse.
    The point is austerity leads to very bad things both on the state and national level and we are not yet in a position that the Eurozone countries were/are.
    Pat needs to create jobs first and get people into them.
    But they’re certainly not out there now.

  • Erlkoenig says:

    Maybe we should spend $350 a week and get Varnam an education.

  • Beach Bum says:

    There is another alternative…

    Find a job.

    Even if it is a job you don’t “want” to work.

Leave a Reply