Top unemployment checks may drop $30 a week

From the Associated Press:

Georgia’s labor commissioner is recommending cuts to jobless benefits in order to repay a federal loan the state took to keep its unemployment fund afloat.

Mark Butler [said] Thursday that his preliminary plan is to slash payments from $330 to $300 a week for top earners and to reduce the number of weeks that Georgians may collect and unemployment. Under Butler’s proposal, unemployed Georgians would also have to wait a week before collecting benefits.

The changes would need to be approved by state lawmakers and would not affect those already collecting benefits.

The state earlier this month paid $21 million in interest on the $721 million loan. Another interest payment will be due next year and Georgia officials want to begin chipping away at the principal.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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124 comments Add your comment

Independent voter

October 20th, 2011
4:27 pm

Want they cut the lawmaker paycheck and how they expect people live off $300 a week that insane. I cant wait until 2012 come so we can vote the republicans out of office.

dixiesdemons

October 20th, 2011
4:28 pm

A $ 721,000, 000 million dollar loan has to be repaid to fed while cutting taxes for the businesses that were obligated to pay it…….. I am part of the % 99

Smoke

October 20th, 2011
4:29 pm

Great idea. The Obama administration should call all of the loans to reduced the federal debt, and since Georgia has high rates, Dixiecrats can cut taxes to create jobs, so we don’t have to worry about the unemployed and pay our loans with no problem. Right!

SAWB

October 20th, 2011
4:41 pm

“cut the lawmaker paycheck”

Why in the world do government employees make so much money? Today I saw that the average government employee makes $120K while the average non-governmental salary is $50K. What in the world is going on here? Why don’t we start with college professors remember how “hard” those guys worked.

Raquel Morris

October 20th, 2011
4:44 pm

Mark Butler should at least have the decency to cut $30/week out of his own check. But no one expects Butler to have much decency.

Redcoat

October 20th, 2011
4:47 pm

Just print enough money for everybody, right Independent voter?

Redcoat

October 20th, 2011
4:49 pm

What is the “fair ” way to tax, anyone care to answer?

SAWB

October 20th, 2011
4:50 pm

“What is the “fair ” way to tax, anyone care to answer?”

Flat tax

Redcoat

October 20th, 2011
4:52 pm

“Tax them ……… what, I have to pay too?” “Why?”

td

October 20th, 2011
4:52 pm

Redcoat

October 20th, 2011
4:49 pm
What is the “fair ” way to tax, anyone care to answer?

Fair tax. Everyone pays their fair share.

Redcoat

October 20th, 2011
4:53 pm

SAWB…….Does that flat tax include everybody?

td

October 20th, 2011
4:54 pm

SAWB

October 20th, 2011
4:41 pm

Those are Federal employees. The vast majority of State employees make less than the $50,000 median income.

ByteMe

October 20th, 2011
4:54 pm

“From each according to their vulnerability, to each according to their greed”.

Redcoat

October 20th, 2011
4:55 pm

Independent, dixiedemons, Smoke, Raquel Morris…..How about it, flat tax for everybody?

Rule .303

October 20th, 2011
4:58 pm

“Why in the world do government employees make so much money? Today I saw that the average government employee makes $120K while the average non-governmental salary is $50K. What in the world is going on here? Why don’t we start with college professors remember how “hard” those guys worked.”

Hey SAWB, you are so gullible and a fool. The link below details every state employee salary, and even names names. Now you tell me how many employees are earning 120K…

http://www.open.ga.gov/sta/viewMain.aud;jsessionid=462CE31E95842D53F9F6E932A5156D23

SAWB

October 20th, 2011
4:58 pm

“Does that flat tax include everybody?”

Well, I would say yes. However, although I think a flat tax would be simple and fair the devil is in the details. Obviously there are variations on the flat tax and the question of what if any deductions are allowed.

Rule .303

October 20th, 2011
4:59 pm

I do agree with you on the Flat tax though, so you’re not that much of a fool ;)

td

October 20th, 2011
4:59 pm

Redcoat

October 20th, 2011
4:53 pm
SAWB…….Does that flat tax include everybody?

It must include everyone. That will be the only way we can ever have a conversation about what the scope and role of government should be.

Bob

October 20th, 2011
5:02 pm

Another classic example of taxpayers overpaying for political excesses. Time to outsource State (and probably Federal, too) gov’ts to Bechtel, Haliburton, etc. And while we’re at it, how about school vouchers for all.

SAWB

October 20th, 2011
5:03 pm

Look I will admit I just used some numbers from a news story, so I need to remember to take what the media says with a grain of salt. However, I do suspect that the average pay, when all compensation is considered, is greater for governmental workers.

Rule .303

October 20th, 2011
5:06 pm

Not in GA; we’re not Unionized…now I can’t speak for other States though. If I told you how much my Health Insurance premium is you’d fall out of your chair. I will admit, the vacation/sick leave allowances are superior to what is offered in the private sector.

SAWB

October 20th, 2011
5:09 pm

“I will admit, the vacation/sick leave allowances are superior to what is offered in the private sector.”

What about pensions? Also, maybe I was painting with too wide of a brush, but we do need to look at overall compensation and assure it is more in line with the private sector.

honested

October 20th, 2011
5:14 pm

This shouldn’t be a problem, given the hard work and spectacular results on jobs and economic growth one by the General Assembly since 2003.

Despite their consistent attempt to attend to the interests of the top 2%, the religiously mis-guided and the plethora of corporate special interests, I guess they were too busy to remember the need for a stable economic climate for the majority of Georgia voters!

Bob

October 20th, 2011
5:16 pm

If you voters would stop electing lawyers, real estate salesmen, and motivational speakers to represent us, we wouldn’t have all these needless laws which require needless gov’t agencies to adminster them. How many of you actually benefit from them? Or, how many of you actually know (or care) about them?

honested

October 20th, 2011
5:16 pm

bob,

You outsource your specific items, personally I would prefer nationalizing all health insurance today (or by tomorrow at the latest).
The money that is misallocated to ‘profit’ is just money taken away from satisfying the needs.

Smoke

October 20th, 2011
5:16 pm

Flat, fat, tall, skinny, it doesn’t matter, just as long as taxes are cut. If Dixiecrats say that cutting taxes, particularly for the 1% will create jobs that will reduce the debt and deficit, is what will get America out of this mess that took Dixiecrats almost three years to realize that we are in, then it must work for Georgia. Whew! Cut the yak, and cut the tax Dixiecrats and show America that it works!

Rule .303

October 20th, 2011
5:18 pm

We’re phasing out pensions in favor of a 401k/pension hybrid so the state doesn’t have to contribute as much. Really, something that should have been done decades ago. I was hired before the changes so I still qualify for the old pension. It’s pretty decent, the only drawback is you have to be employed for at least 10 years before you can be vested, and that’s only 50% of your salary, but it rises as you put in more years. You have to wait until you’re 60 to collect, or put in 30 years and you can collect right away, which is sweet if you started working in your early 20s.

One thing I resent is that teachers are categorized as state employees, yet they have their own, superior, retirement plan.

Rule .303

October 20th, 2011
5:19 pm

Ooooops, that was meant for SAWB

Smoke

October 20th, 2011
5:21 pm

There is a reason that Andrew Young called Neal Boortz a SAWB, and unfortunately, the word for S was defined incorrectly. We must know our history. Cut yak and cut the tax and show America that it works!

Bob

October 20th, 2011
5:23 pm

honest Ted…a better idea would be to open health insurance nationally, like auto or property/casualty insurance. Would be cheaper, and anything nationalized and administered by a gov’t is too expensive. How ’bout tort reform, too?

saywhat?

October 20th, 2011
5:23 pm

SAWB

October 20th, 2011
5:09 pm
What about pensions? Also, maybe I was painting with too wide of a brush, but we do need to look at overall compensation and assure it is more in line with the private sector.

I have a better idea. Given that our economy is consumer driven, a suffering private sector drags down the economy.If the private sector is suffering, and not doing as well as the public sector, why not work at raising the private sector up, instead of pushing the public sector down, further damaging the economy along the way? Once the private sector is healthy again, and providing economically favorable compensation to the average worker, I would have no problem reducing public sector compensation if needed to make it comparable.

honested

October 20th, 2011
5:24 pm

Smoke,

Have you seen any projections as to how long that pipe dream should stay in place before it bears any fruit?
The results at the National level tend to suggest it isn’t likely to ever happen.

honested

October 20th, 2011
5:29 pm

bob,

For a company to ’sell insurance nationally’ requires repeal of McCarren-Ferguson of 1945, a law that allows states primary authority to regulate insurance. I would be all for repeal, insurance companies and the State Insurance Commissioners those companies have ‘worked so hard’ to hand pick and get elected are hell bent against any sort of repeal. You bet it would make insurance a different product, but not for the reason parrotted by talk radio hacks.

Why would the government be any more expensive? They currently run Medicare with an overhead of about 6% while the average insurance company feels entitled to 35%. Since Central Payer Insurance wouldn’t need a multi-million dollar CEO, televised golf tournaments, endless commercials on TV, where would any additional expense come from?

honested

October 20th, 2011
5:30 pm

bob,

Forgot to add, see how much difference in the actual delivery cost of any services the overblown idea of tort reform has made in ANY state.

Bob

October 20th, 2011
5:33 pm

HT…works pretty well for other types of insurance, so why not health? Go back to my earlier post about electing lawyers, etc., outsourcing makes more sense. Really, you think Gov’t administered anything is not expensive (as well as less effective)? Look at Social Security, education, etc.

double

October 20th, 2011
5:33 pm

Send Graves to pay off Feds.

State Worker

October 20th, 2011
5:34 pm

SAWB:

Where in the world did you get the crazy idea that the “average government employee makes $120K”? Are you high on drugs? State salaries are posted on the internet, spend a few minutes and get some actual facts. The vast majority of state employees make less than half that, and despite what you hear on talk radio, our pension and other benefits are not that great and getting worse and more expensive by the month.

Bob

October 20th, 2011
5:35 pm

Send Graves to jail! Trying to skip out on a bank loan.

gm

October 20th, 2011
5:35 pm

When will the southern voter ever get it, year after year they continue to vote these people who come around during election time and pretend they are good old boys, when they get in to office they screw low and milddle class every time.
Look at Johnny I. your Sen you idiots vote him in office year after year and this selfish, idiot voted against the job bill that could have brought thousands of jobs to Georgia, when will the southern hicks understand, rich whites conservatives do not care about middle class whites, black, brown they only care how much more they can get.

mum

October 20th, 2011
5:36 pm

They didn’t fund unemployment for years so now they are taking it out of the hide of the state’s unemployed. Interesting that the only mentioned how much they are cutting from the top rate and noting about the lower rates.

“Butler says he opposes raising or re-instituting taxes employers pay into the unemployment insurance fund.” So, they don’t want to upset their donors but will happily take from the unemployed. The paid the interest by raiding the state medicaid fund, so get ready to hear how they plan to repay that money.

honested

October 20th, 2011
5:40 pm

bob,

The rules are the same for ALL types of insurance, health is the only one that really precludes transparent cost shopping (wonder what industry is fighting tooth and nail to keep it that way).

It is funny that you cling to some of the BEST examples in the world why the GOVERNMENT is better at service delivery than the imaginary free market.

Bob

October 20th, 2011
5:43 pm

Honest Ted…I give up…you win. BTW, where can I get some of that peyeote that you’re smoking? Have a great evening.

blue dog

October 20th, 2011
5:56 pm

They had a moratorium on collecting the unemployment taxes for years giving businesses a break…now you want to take it out of the unemployed’s checks because it would be a hardship on businesses to pay…typical GOP BS.

Markus Justice

October 20th, 2011
6:17 pm

Congress is overpaid. 10 years of service and a lifetime of benefits. Reduce congressional pay, staff and perks. Give the state the right to select their Senators like the founders designed the government. Washington is the problem, no solutions are coming from those crooks. That is for Republicans and Democrats. gm and others like him, you voted for Marxist rhetoric and essentially liberation theology when you put Obama in office. It didn’t work in South America where it was started, it did not work in the black community where black liberation theology was prompted and it won’t work for the US because humans have wants and needs essential to survival and pleasure. If I take from you because you have more, I will quit producing. Its a sin what Obama is doing; promoting his rhetoric to create envy, jealousy, and covenant of thy neighbor.

Smoke

October 20th, 2011
6:44 pm

Like most Dixiecrat “Don Quixote” concerns, tort reform is a prime example. 100% of malpractice claims are brought against 7% of doctors and many are repeat offenders. So rather than waste taxpayers’ money, make it a crime and put the quacks in jail!! There is a reason that we have the phrase “quacks.”

Atl Resident

October 20th, 2011
6:48 pm

Umm, people let’s be real stopping blaming government for everything that goes wrong in “your” life and as “people” start being more accountable for the your own B.S. that you may cause. In other words, if you screw up, just do something better to fix it instead of putting blame on next person. We as a nation need to start helping each other and stop all the trash talk. Tired of all these sorry damn politicians and other no names talking about how they can fix economy, but ask anyone to run for president or higher position, they can’t do it cause they know what’s up.

Frederick Douglass

October 20th, 2011
6:51 pm

Markus Justice

You started out as if you were going to rip all of Washington a new one, but alas it seems you only wanted to bash Obama. Hey why not skip the Republicans, and congressional perks window dressing, and just go right to your object of hatred, Obama.

Smoke

October 20th, 2011
6:52 pm

Business makes a major mess up, government (regardless of party) bails them out, business either fails or recovers, and liberals get the blame if they fail and no credit if they succeed. I see Obama as a pretty good quarterback with a weak liberal offensive line, and a Dixiecrat defense that sucks, and everyone knows that the Dixiecrat backups on either side of the ball, can’t even make the practice squad. Cut the yak and cut the tax Georgia.

RON PAUL 2012

October 20th, 2011
6:53 pm

Enter your comments here

Smoke

October 20th, 2011
7:08 pm

Company A buys Company B. 12-months later, Company A eliminates 90% of the jobs that Company B had created. The 1%, who happened to be Company B’s majority stockholders are “forced” to retire with a few shares of stock. Company A’s profits meet Wall Street projections, CEO gets a salary increase, bonus and a maintained tax cut to boot. Government and the people who got laid off gets the blame for the increase in unemployment. Oh yeah, the last 9% from Company B? Their jobs are eliminated so they can get unemployment or just fired in this “Right to Work” State, and assigns unequipped people to handle the job and they fail. Then in a couple of years, Company A buys another company and the cycle starts over again.