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Unemployment Benefits to End Saturday for Millions of Americans

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More than one million unemployed Americans are bracing for their federally funded benefits to end. Tomorrow.

Since 2008 the federal government has been funding extensions of the benefits after the original state benefits run out which is after 26 weeks. Over the years that time has expanded to 99 weeks of benefits for those out of work. But the latest budget passed in Congress doesn't include any money for those benefits to continue.

In Nevada 17,000 recipients will come to the end of their eligibility this weekend.

"Some will fall into social programs like welfare and other will pool their resources with family members to get through," says Kelly Karch Deputy Administrator of the program in Carson City. "I think some will move to other states that have more vibrant economies like North Dakota and Texas. And some will take any job they can get, even if it's not the job they want, just to survive."

With the highest unemployment rate in the country for four years running officials say we certainly will feel it harder than other states.

"We have been sending out as much as $4.2 million a week to those recipients," says Jeff Frischmann, Chief, UI Operations. "And that means millions less going to car payments and local businesses. It's going to hurt."

In Washington, Democratic leaders including Senator Harry Reid are fighting for another three month extension of the benefits in January. Some Republicans say they would go along with that plan 'if' funding can be found.

In the meantime, officials say that recipients should continue to file their weekly claims because if Congress approves another extension, everything will be in place to offer payments immediately.

Written by Erin Breen

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