Massachusetts Republican lawmakers have filed legislation that would prevent an automatic, 31 percent hike in the amount of money employers pay into the unemployment insurance trust fund. Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr, R-Gloucester and House Minority Leader Bradley Jones, R-North Reading, co-sponsored the bill.
Without such a freeze, the average annual cost to businesses would
rise to $935 per employee, up from $715 last year. Similar freezes have
been enacted in each of the past three years.
“Unemployment insurance is already a major cost for employers in
Massachusetts, and one that relates directly to the number of people
they employ. A substantial rate increase now will not only imperil a
struggling economic recovery, it will also put a new obstacle in the way
of getting people back to work,” Tarr said in a statement.
The rate hike was effective as of the beginning of the year, but the
legislature still has time to approve a freeze because employers don’t
have to start paying the tax until the end of the first quarter.
Obama extended tax break for employees and extended the unemployment checks, but someone still has to pay and it is business, or what is left of business.