Federal Unemployment Extension Bill on Track for Passage

The American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act of 2010 (H.R.4213) passed the U.S. Senate yesterday (Tuesday, 7/20/10) by a vote of 60-40 just enough to overcome the Republican filibuster threat extending unemployment benefits for 2.5 million jobless Americans. The bill now goes back to the House for approval before it can be sent to the President for approval.

 The cost of the bill is estimated at $34 billion, less than half of the original $200 billion price tag, and as much as 70% being paid with offsets.

While the bill has many provisions to close tax loopholes affecting wealthy individuals and corporations, the bill extends for three month the closing deadline for first-time homebuyers looking to get the $8,000 tax credit, and also extends charitable tax incentives we lobbied for under the Pension Protection Act of 2006, such as the IRA rollover (sec.226) and the enhanced charitable deductions for contributions of food (sec.251), books (sec.252) or computers (sec.253).

H.R.4213.EAH would extend benefits for the next three months (until November) retroactive to the first week of June. What’s missing? The $25 per week Federal Additional Compensation (FAC) stimulus is missing, as is an extension of COBRA health insurance. It also includes drastic reductions in Medicaid, Medicare, and Tricare. All of this of course impact families that are already struggling to find gainful employment. American families are facing a crisis not witnessed in decades, joblessness, homelessness, lack of medical care, and even hunger. In Philadelphia at least, one third of those going hungry are children.

Extension of unemployment benefits is a critical step, but it is only the first step. This would be the eighth extension of unemployment benefits since July 2008, at a total cost of over $120 billion. WHERE IS THE PLAN TO FIX THE ECONOMY? Where is the plan to work with business and nonprofits to grow the workforce with well-paying jobs upon which a person can build a family?

–David A. Ross, J.D.

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Read more at:

(7/21/10) Unemployment benefits extension comes with mixed views, concerns, by David Bodenheimer, The Dispatch (Lexington, NC) http://www.the-dispatch.com/article/20100721/articles/100729982&tc=yahoo?tc=ar

(7/20/10) Filibuster broken, jobless benefits may flow soon. By a single vote, jobless benefits extension clears Senate hurdle, setting stage for passage, by Andrew Taylor, Associated Press. “The recovery from the nation’s long and deep recession has produced relatively few new jobs so far, and millions of people’s unemployment benefits began running out seven weeks ago as Congress bogged down in an impasse over whether the $34 billion cost of a fresh extension of benefits should be paid for with budget cuts or be added to the $13 trillion national debt.” http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Filibuster-broken-jobless-apf-1521010382.html?x=0&.v=24

(6/28/10) H.R. 4213 American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act | What’s Left, World news Vine. http://worldnewsvine.com/2010/06/h-r-4213-american-jobs-and-closing-tax-loopholes-act-whats-left/

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About David A. Ross and Associates
David A. Ross, J.D. is a public policy and advocacy consultant from Pennsylvania. David A. Ross and Associates connects companies, nonprofits and government agencies to the rules, tools, information and resources they need to achieve their mission goals.

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