Friday, June 15, 2012
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Economic growth strong enough to close 2nd temporary unemployment insurance program

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[June 15, 2012]  CHICAGO -- A federally funded unemployment insurance program called Emergency Unemployment Compensation Tier 4, or EUC4, will end on June 23, according to the Illinois Department of Employment Security. The program ends because specific economic improvements identified by Congress have been achieved.

As a result, EUC4 will not be available to individuals who complete EUC3 after June 23. Most individuals who collected through EUC3 received benefits for 73 weeks. Those who qualified for EUC4 as of June 23 can continue to collect under the program. EUC4 generally lasts six weeks. The Extended Benefit program, which provided 20 weeks of benefits for those who qualified and who completed EUC4, ended May 12 after unemployment rates fell below the levels they reached in the previous three years.

"Our economy is improving. Overall job growth should remain positive, as it has for more than two years, despite uneven monthly reports," said IDES Director Jay Rowell said. " is one reason for optimism. There are more than 100,000 jobs available at the state's no-cost job board for workers and businesses alike."

The employment website links business job orders and resumes. This no-cost, online career resource allows individuals to create multiple resumes that emphasize different talents and allows businesses to search for specific skills. The keyword matching technology increases the likelihood of a successful new hire. Illinois JobLink emphasizes Illinois jobs, scrapes other commercial job boards and compares favorably with private efforts that cost hundreds of dollars.

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Illinois has added 142,100 jobs since January 2010, when job growth returned after nearly two years of consecutive monthly declines. The unemployment rate peaked at 11.4 percent in January 2010. The April rate, the latest available, was 8.7 percent. The rate has fallen for eight consecutive months.

Up to 99 weeks of unemployment insurance potentially was available prior to congressional action in February. Regular benefits lasted 26 weeks. EUC Tiers 1, 2, 3 and 4, funded by the federal government, lasted 53 weeks. The Extended Benefit program lasted 20 weeks. The EUC program will end Dec. 29, according to current federal law. EUC tiers were enacted at various times under Presidents Bush and Obama.

[Text from Illinois Department of Employment Security file received from the Illinois Office of Communication and Information]

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