AP News

RI labor dept.: Some jobless to see 12 percent cut


PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Up to 8,000 Rhode Islanders getting extended unemployment benefits will see a reduction in their benefits this month because of across-the-board federal budget cuts, state labor officials said Tuesday.

The Department of Labor and Training said that weekly benefits under the federal emergency unemployment program are being cut 12 percent beginning April 21.

State labor officials say the average weekly benefit is $377, so the average deduction will be $46 a week.

The emergency unemployment program allows the long-term jobless to extend the time they are collecting benefits up to 47 weeks. That's more than the 26 weeks that are offered under regular unemployment.

The reductions will be reflected in payments that go out the week of April 28.

U.S. Rep. Jim Langevin has been highlighting what he describes as other harmful effects of the automatic cuts. On Tuesday, the Rhode Island Democrat toured a Head Start program in Providence. His office says the state is expected to lose $1.8 million in Head Start funding through the fiscal year that ends Sept. 30 under the budget cuts. That could mean up to 65 jobs lost and more than 300 fewer children served, he said.

Seven percent of all state revenue comes from grants affected by the federal cuts, according to Langevin's office.


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