A new OK Policy issue brief looks at the federal stimulus funding that is being made available to states that adopt a number of modest reforms to their Unemployment Insurance (UI) programs. As the number of jobless workers claiming UI benefits rises rapidly, Oklahoma’s UI program may be approaching a situation, known as conditional factors, that automatically triggers cuts in jobless benefits and increases in employer taxes to keep the state’s UI Trust Fund solvent. The stimulus bill would provide Oklahoma $75.9 million that could avert or minimize these tax hikes and benefit cuts, contingent on implementing some worthwhile changes to the UI program that Oklahoma has already largely enacted.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Former Executive Director David Blatt joined OK Policy in 2008 and served as its Executive Director from 2010 to 2019. He previously served as Director of Public Policy for Community Action Project of Tulsa County and as a budget analyst for the Oklahoma State Senate. He has a Ph.D. in political science from Cornell University and a B.A. from the University of Alberta. David has been selected as Political Scientist of the Year by the Oklahoma Political Science Association, Local Social Justice Champion by the Dan Allen Center for Social Justice, and Public Citizen of the Year by the National Association of Social Workers.