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Legislature to Return to Fix Unemployment Benefit Problem

October 19, 2009

Office of the Speaker



October 19, 2009

Contact: Greg Foster

(803) 734-3125

Failure to alert anyone of problem highlights need for ESC Reform

(Columbia, SC) – Today, Lawmakers announced that the General Assembly would convene in session under the Sine Die Resolution to correct an oversight made by the Employment Security Commission so that South Carolinians will not lose federal unemployment benefits.

The General Assembly will convene October 27th at noon to pass the necessary legislation that will allow our state’s jobless access to this Federal unemployment benefit.  Lawmakers are currently looking for the best legislative vehicle to use for this fix and expect the process to take no longer than just a few days.

House Speaker Bobby Harrell and Senate President Pro Tempore Glenn McConnell said in a joint statement:

“The General Assembly will take quick action to fix this oversight by the ESC to ensure that unemployed South Carolinians will not suffer further by being denied this Federal benefit.”

“It is unfortunate that the Legislature must return to fix this problem, this oversight was completely avoidable and further highlights the need for reforming the ESC from a reactive check writing agency into a proactive job placement agency.  Just as the ESC waited until the 11th hour to warn the General Assembly about the dwindling Unemployment Trust Fund, again the ESC has laid this problem at the feet of lawmakers at the last possible minute.”

Lawmakers will receive no additional legislative pay for these session days.

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