Nearly 11,000 Connecticut residents who have been looking for work for over a year lost their extended unemployment insurance benefits this month. Federal law allows a state to offer extra weeks of benefits if (1) its unemployment rate reaches certain thresholds (13 weeks if at least 6.5%; 20 weeks if at least 8%), and (2) this rate is at least 10% higher than it was in any of the three prior years. But unemployment rates have remained so high for so long that most states no longer meet this “three-year look back”. In short, benefits have ended not because economic conditions have improved, but because they have not significantly deteriorated in the past three years.
Source: Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 5/14/12, Jobless benefits