(The State) Senate: New rates do not punish manufacturers

As the LCI sub-committee continues to explore adjusting the unemployment rates, there is a very important thing to remember: There are 20 rate classes, 1 being the lowest and 20 being the highest. No industry average is above 12. The State Newspaper helped clarify this:

State Newspaper: A state lawmaker today countered claims that manufacturers will have to unfairly carry the cost of repaying a billion-dollar federal loan that allowed the state to continue to pay unemployment benefits.

State Sen. Kevin Bryant, R-Anderson, cited a list of manufacturers in his district and elsewhere that would pay less under proposed new unemployment insurance rates.

Some manufacturers have complained their rates have increased six-fold under the new rating system, with some now paying more than $1,000 an employee for jobless insurance.

Michelin and BWM, two major Upstate manufacturing employers, both are in the sixth-lowest of 20 rate classes, Bryant said.

Manufacturers and other businesses are pushing to adjust the proposed rates, either by lowering the top rates or extending the length of time to repay the loan.

A Senate subcommittee will debate the bill again tomorrow.

– John O’Connor