Press Release of U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer

For Immediate Release:
July 21, 2010  
Contact:
Washington D.C. Office (202) 224-3553

Boxer Statement on Extension of Unemployment Benefits  

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) issued the following statement after the Senate passed legislation that will extend unemployment benefits to help out-of-work Americans who are actively pursuing new jobs. The bill passed the Senate on a vote of 59-39.

Senator Boxer said, “Extending unemployment benefits will help more than 1.4 million Californians support their families this year while they actively look for work in a difficult economy. Economists tell us that extending these benefits also provides a critical boost to our economy because unemployment checks are spent quickly at businesses throughout our communities.”

Since June 2, unemployment benefits have lapsed for approximately 2.5 million Americans – including more than 400,000 Californians. This legislation will restore benefits retroactively to unemployed Americans who lost this critical assistance.

The bill will also extend eligibility for these benefits through November 30, 2010. Without congressional action to extend these benefits, more than 1.4 million Californians were at risk of losing their benefits this year.

Economists have long promoted unemployment benefits as a way to provide an immediate boost to the economy. Mark Zandi, a chief economist of Moody’s Analytics, has calculated that every dollar invested in unemployment benefits produces $1.61 in economic activity. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that every dollar spent on jobless benefits results in as much as $1.90 in economic activity.

The legislation now goes to the House, where a vote is expected tomorrow. If approved, the bill would then go to President Obama for his signature.