Officials with the Texas Workforce Commission have announced that as many as 82,000 recipients of unemployment benefits in the state will face delays in getting their money as the agency scrambles to borrow $634 million from the federal government.
Unemployed Texans who were eligible for automatic 13-week extension soon will not see the benefits until the state can work out computer issues and comply with federal regulations. Officials are assuring those who are eligible that the benefits will be retroactive to when they should have been renewed.
Texas Democratic Party Chairman Boyd Ritchie criticized Governor Rick Perry for turning down $556 million in federal stimulus funds to expand the state’s unemployment benefits.
“Unfortunately, hardworking Texas taxpayers and struggling businesses will shoulder the burden of Rick Perry’s failure to do the right thing for our state and accept the unemployment insurance funds,” Richie said.
Perry said that borrowing from the federal government to shore up unemployment trust funds is routine and that expanding the state’s unemployment system would have been a burden on businesses for years to come.