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Feds trimming benefits as Utah jobless rate drops

Published: Saturday, March 24 2012 8:49 p.m. MDT

Federal officials say Utah's job market is doing too well to be part of an emergency unemployment benefits program.

Associated Press

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SALT LAKE CITY — Federal officials say Utah's job market is doing too well to be part of an emergency unemployment benefits program.

State officials announced Friday that the Department of Labor was knocking Utah out of the program's Tier III level because unemployment was below 6 percent for three consecutive months.

Residents were eligible for up to 47 weeks of federal jobless benefits, but that number will drop down to 34.

Utahns have until the week ending April 7 to exhaust their Tier II benefits and become eligible for the Tier III extension.

The emergency program took effect in July 2008 and helped workers who had exhausted 26 weeks of regular state unemployment benefits. Workers could claim a total of 73 weeks of benefits if they used both state and federal programs.

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