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That Extra $600 In Weekly Unemployment Benefits Is Going Away. What's Next In California?

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Federal legislation passed early in the coronavirus pandemic included an extra $600 per week in unemployment benefits. But now those payments are going away, and losing them would have massive ripple effects.

Those federal payments have now pumped more than $26 billion into California's unemployment system. So far Congress hasn't come up with a plan to extend them.

What does that mean for Californians? A dramatic drop in unemployment payments.

Without that federal money, Californians would receive a median weekly payment of just $339 in state unemployment insurance, according to a recent analysis from researchers with the California Policy Lab.

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UCLA economist Till von Wachter, one of the researchers, said that without the federal $600 boost:

"About half of Californians would have weekly benefits that put them below the federal poverty line."

State lawmakers are very concerned.

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