Ill. gov seeks payroll tax cut, jobless benefits

AP News
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Posted: Dec 08, 2011 2:21 PM
Ill. gov seeks payroll tax cut, jobless benefits

Gov. Pat Quinn is lobbying the Illinois congressional delegation to approve a payroll tax cut and an extension of unemployment insurance benefits for the long-term jobless before adjourning for the year.

Quinn met Thursday morning with members of the Illinois delegation in Washington. He said the tax cut is essential for working people who live paycheck to paycheck.

The Obama administration is pushing to lower the payroll tax to 3.1 percent next year. Unless Congress acts, the tax would revert to 6.2 percent.

Democrats also are pushing to continue extended jobless benefits. In states with high unemployment rates, laid-off workers can collect benefits for up to 99 weeks.

Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin said the extension is necessary because there are still about four unemployed people for every job opening.