Washington – (AP) - The House has voted to provide another 13 weeks of unemployment benefits to workers in those states hardest hit by the prolonged economic downturn. The Washington Democrat who sponsored the bill, Rep. Jim McDermott, says it could help more than 300,000 jobless workers expected to lose their unemployment compensation by the end of September. The legislation, if also approved by the Senate, could also prevent more than 1 million in danger of exhausting their benefits by the end of the year.
Montgomery, AL – (AP) - The death toll has reached 10 from floodwaters in Georgia and Alabama with the report of a sixth death in a county west of Atlanta. Douglas County spokesman Wes Tallon on Wednesday said the latest victim in the suburban county was a man whose car appeared to have been washed off the road near a creek Tuesday night. Portions of Interstate 20 west of Atlanta remained closed to commuter traffic Wednesday morning, but other major highways that had been closed Tuesday because of high water had reopened.
Montgomery, AL – (AP) - Days of torrential rain have apparently claimed one life in Alabama and forced about three dozen residents to flee their homes or be rescued from vehicles on washed out roads. Etowah County Sheriff Todd Entrekin said a dive team recovered the body of 22-year-old James Dale Leigh of the Sand Valley community from a pond on Monday. Witnesses said he drowned when a portion of the pond's rain-soaked bank collapsed while he was walking on it. Bibb County emergency management director Wayne Hayes also said
Montgomery, AL – (AP) - Gov. Bob Riley says Alabama will offer a compromise in its ongoing dispute with a federal agency over claims that the state has been receiving too much federal money for the program. Riley made the remark on Monday after meeting with the director of the federal Center for Medicaid and State Operations. The federal government argues Alabama was overpaid by up to $300 million during the past four years to finance its Medicaid program. The dispute centers on how Alabama calculates its share of the cost
Montgomery, AL – (AP) - More than 25,000 first-time homebuyers in Alabama have claimed the federal tax credit offered under the economic stimulus program. The IRS, which announced the latest figures Thursday, said Alabama ranked 20th in the number claiming the tax credit. The program ends Dec. 1. It offers a tax credit of 10 percent of the purchase price - with a maximum credit of $8,000 - to homebuyers with qualifying income levels who have never bought a home or have not owned one in the last three years.
Montgomery, AL – (AP) - Jefferson County employees may have to continue working just 32 hours a week indefinitely. County officials said Thursday they are considering extending the shortened workweek for all employees to help cut spending. Most county employees were switched from a 40-hour week to a 32-hour week over the summer to make up for the loss of occupational tax revenue. The payroll cut plus unpaid leave for hundreds of workers helped trim $75 million from the county's budget, but sales tax revenues remain slow.