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Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez
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News Release

ETA News Release: [05/05/2011]
Contact Name: Dave Roberts or Lina Garcia
Phone Number: (202) 693-5945 or x4661
Release Number: 11-0665-ATL

US Department of Labor announces supplemental funding to help Georgia residents looking for work cover health insurance payments

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Labor today announced a $280,000 National Emergency Grant supplemental award to provide an estimated 263 additional jobless workers in Georgia with partial premium payments for health insurance coverage. An initial award of $297,000 was approved on March 4, 2010, to serve about 280 workers.

"Helping these individuals maintain insurance coverage as they seek re-employment is one way we can ensure Georgia's working families get the support they need and deserve," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "Searching for a new job can be challenging enough without the added concern of how to pay for health insurance, especially if the job seeker or a family member falls ill or needs medical attention."

Awarded to the Georgia Department of Labor, the grant will be used to make health insurance payments for unemployed individuals who are receiving Trade Adjustment Assistance benefits and are eligible for the Health Coverage Tax Credit. The TAA Health Coverage Improvement Act of 2009, which authorized eligible recipients to receive payments at 80 percent of the cost of qualified health insurance premiums, expired on February 13. Therefore, all the proposed participants under this supplemental funding will receive payments at the 65 percent level.

The funds announced today will be used to make "gap filler" payments for up to three months, the amount of time it takes to complete Internal Revenue Service enrollment, processing and first payments under the HCTC.

National Emergency Grants are part of the secretary of labor's discretionary fund and are awarded based on a state's ability to meet specific guidelines. For more information, visit http://www.doleta.gov/NEG/.