Washington to regain some long-term jobless benefits

OLYMPIA — A worsening unemployment rate in Washington state is leading to extended unemployment benefits for some.

The state’s Employment Security Department said Monday that the state’s three-month unemployment rate average has risen back to 7 percent. That means some additional federally funded emergency unemployment compensation will restart Sunday, extending benefits for nine weeks.

Jobless workers in Washington can currently claim up to 54 weeks of unemployment benefits. They had been able to get 63 weeks of benefits until last summer, when the three-month average unemployment rate fell below 7 percent.

Employment Security Commissioner Dale Peinecke says the federal government shutdown in October contributed to the rise in the unemployment rate, triggering the extra federal support.

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