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CHAPTER 82--S.F.No. 1006

An act

relating to unemployment insurance; providing for extended benefits.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

IRON ORE MINING AND RELATED INDUSTRY EXTENDED UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS PROGRAM.

Subdivision 1.

Availability of extended benefits.

Extended unemployment benefits are available from the Minnesota unemployment insurance trust fund to an applicant who was laid off due to lack of work after March 1, 2015, from:

(1) an iron ore mining industry employer; or

(2) an employer providing goods or services to an iron mining industry employer if the applicant was laid off due to the cessation or substantial reduction in operations of an iron mining industry employer.

Subd. 2.

Eligibility requirements.

An applicant is eligible to receive extended unemployment benefits under this section for any week through the week ending June 25, 2017, if:

(1) the applicant established a benefit account under Minnesota Statutes, section 268.07, with a majority of the wage credits from an iron ore mining industry employer or an employer providing goods or services to iron mining industry employers, and has exhausted the maximum amount of regular unemployment benefits available on that benefit account; and

(2) the applicant meets the same requirements that an applicant for regular unemployment benefits must meet under Minnesota Statutes, section 268.069, subdivision 1.

Subd. 3.

Weekly and maximum amount of extended unemployment benefits.

(a) The weekly benefit amount of extended unemployment benefits is the same as the weekly benefit amount of regular unemployment benefits on the benefit account established in subdivision 2, clause (1).

(b) The maximum amount of extended unemployment benefits available to an applicant under this section is an amount equal to 26 weeks of payment at the applicant's weekly extended unemployment benefit amount.

(c) If an applicant qualifies for a new regular benefit account that meets the requirements of subdivision 4, paragraph (b), before the applicant has been paid extended unemployment benefits, and that new regular benefit account meets the requirements of subdivision 2, clause (1), the applicant's weekly extended unemployment benefit amount is equal to the weekly unemployment benefit amount on the applicant's new regular benefit account.

Subd. 4.

Qualifying for a new regular benefit account.

(a) If after exhausting the maximum amount of regular unemployment benefits available as a result of the layoff under subdivision 1, an applicant qualifies for the new regular benefit account under Minnesota Statutes, section 268.07, the applicant must apply for and establish that new regular benefit account.

(b) If the applicant's weekly benefit amount under the new regular benefit account is equal to or higher than the applicant's weekly extended unemployment benefit amount, the applicant must request unemployment benefits under the new regular benefit account. An applicant is ineligible for extended unemployment benefits under this section until the applicant has exhausted the maximum amount of unemployment benefits available on the new regular benefit account.

(c) If the applicant's weekly unemployment benefit amount on the new regular benefit account is less than the applicant's weekly benefit amount of extended unemployment benefits, the applicant must request extended unemployment benefits. An applicant is ineligible for new regular unemployment benefits until the applicant has exhausted the maximum amount of extended unemployment benefits available under this section.

Subd. 5.

Charging of benefits.

Extended unemployment benefits paid under this section may not be used to compute the future unemployment tax rate of a taxpaying employer nor charged to the reimbursing account of government or nonprofit employers.

Subd. 6.

Eligibility for federal Trade Readjustment Allowance benefits.

An applicant who has applied and been determined eligible for federal Trade Readjustment Allowance benefits is not eligible for extended unemployment benefits under this section.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment and is retroactive from August 31, 2015.

Presented to the governor March 24, 2016

Signed by the governor March 24, 2016, 5:46 p.m.