Harrisburg – October 26, 2016 – Legislation designed to fix a problem created four years ago by a change in the unemployment compensation law that has impacted seasonal/cyclical workers cleared the Senate and will now go back to the state House of Representatives for concurrence, state Sen. Christine M. Tartaglione (D-Philadelphia) said.

House Bill 319 changes how unemployment benefits are calculated as it relates to seasonal and cyclical workers.  Under current law, a worker earning less than 49.5 percent of income in the three quarters outside the high quarter was ineligible for UC benefits.  The legislation reduces the percentage to 37 percent and restores it to the previous rate.  The change is expected to make an estimated 44,000 seasonal workers eligible for benefits.

Tartaglione serves as Democratic chair of the Senate Labor and Industry Committee.  She was involved in helping craft the change and issued the following comments about the legislation:

“For several years, seasonal and cyclical workers and their families have had to deal the inadvertent consequences of the previous change in the unemployment compensation law.  If approved by the House, this legislation makes those workers who were affected eligible for benefits.

“We cannot wait another year to repair this flaw in the statute.  I am hopeful that the House will adopt this measure and the governor will sign it into law.”

House Bill 319 passed the Senate on a 39-8 vote.