U.S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
Employment and Training Administration
Washington, D. C. 20210
CLASSIFICATION  

CORRESPONDENCE SYMBOL  

ISSUE DATE August 20, 1993

RESCISSIONS

None

EXPIRATION DATE

September 30, 1994

DIRECTIVE

:

GENERAL ADMINISTRATION LETTER NO. 12-92, Change 4

 

TO

:

ALL STATE EMPLOYMENT SECURITY AGENCIES

 

FROM

:

Barbara Ann Farmer
Administrator for Regional Management

 

SUBJECT

:

Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) Act of 1991, As Amended

  1. Purpose: To provide a revised interpretation, a technical clarification, and amended operating instructions for States and State employment security agencies (SESAs) for the administration of the provisions of Title I of the "EUC Act of 1991," as amended.

  2. Contact: Inquiries concerning this directive should be addressed to the appropriate Regional Office.

  3. References: Title I of the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Act of 1991, Public Law (P.L.) 102-164, as amended by P.L. 102-182, P.L. 102-244, P.L. 102-318, and P.L. 103-6; the Federal-State Extended Unemployment Compensation Act of 1970 (FSEUCA), as amended; 20 CFR Parts 615 and 617; GAL 12-92 and Changes; GAL 7-93; UIPL 9-92 and Changes; the Trade Act of 1974; and GAL 10-92.

  4. Revised Interpretation: Sections 102(b)(2)(A)(v)(II) and (III) of the EUC Act of 1991, as amended, define the unemployment rates and the period of time to which the rates apply that are used by the Department in the determination of whether a 7-percent period or 6.8-percent period exist.

    On July 26, 1993, the Department announced a revised interpretation of the requirements of Sections 102(b)(2)(A)(v)(II) and (III), EUC Act of 1991.

    The revised interpretation is that a "7-percent period" will be in effect when the national rate of total unemployment (seasonally adjusted) for each of the two most recent months is less than 7 percent, rather than in effect when the average of the two months' rates is less than 7 percent. Likewise, a "6.8-percent period" will be in effect when the national rate of total unemployment (seasonally adjusted) for each of the two most recent months' is less than 6.8 percent, rather than when the average of the two month's rates is less than 6.8 percent.

  5. Technical Clarification: 

    1. Effective Date of Section 101(e). Title I of the EUC Act of 1991 has been amended several times including the amendments made by Section 101(d) of the EUC Amendments of 1992 (P.L. 102-318). Section 101(d) of the EUC Amendments of 1992 added a new sentence to paragraph (1) and a new paragraph (2) titled "Weeks of Benefits During Phase-out" to Section 101(e) of the EUC Act. The effective date of the changes to Section 101(e), which imposed requirements specific to weeks occurring during the phaseout of the EUC program, was not distinguished from other requirements contained in Section 101 of the EUC Amendments of 1992, which were made applicable to weeks beginning after June 13, 1992.

      The Employment and Training Administration (ETA) issued controlling guidance for the States and State agencies in the operating instructions in GAL 4-92, Change 4, for implementation of the Unemployment Compensation Amendments of 1992 (enacted July 3, 1992). In GAL 4-92 the effective date for weeks to which the requirements of Section 101(e)(2) of the EUC Act apply is shown as the date of the first week beginning after the last week during which new claims could be determined eligible under the EUC program. This manner of indicating the effective date of the provision was continued with the consolidation of the Attachments to GAL 4-92 in GAL 12-92, dated September 11, 1992, and subsequent changes to GAL 12-92, notably Change 3, which changed the March 6 date to October 2 as the end of the program for initial claims.

      It is this Department's interpretation that the title and language of Section 101(e), and the legislative history and congressional intent clearly indicate that the requirements of paragraph (2) of Section 101(e) (like the requirements of paragraph (1)) apply to only those weeks of unemployment occurring during the phaseout of the EUC program. The affected weeks are those beginning October 3, 1993 through January 15, 1994.

      For weeks of unemployment beginning before October 3, 1993, for which an EB period is in effect in a State, the provisions of Sections 101(b)(1) and 102(b)(3) of the EUC Act of 1991 continue to apply.

    2. Governor's Election to Trigger Off EB. Section 101(e)(1) of the EUC Act provides authority to the Governor of a State (if State law permits) to elect to trigger off an extended compensation period in order to provide benefits under the EUC program. The time permitted for this election is being changed from 10 days to "as soon as is administratively feasible." It is this Department's opinion that it is within the discretion of the Governor to delegate the authority to make the election to the head of the SESA or some other State official, if authorized by State law. Evidence of such a delegation is to be supplied to the Department as soon as possible after the delegation.

  6. Changes to Operating Instructions: The operating instructions in GAL 12-92 (including Attachments A, B, and C) and subsequent Changes are issued to the States and cooperating State agencies and constitute the controlling guidance provided by the Department of Labor in its role as the principal in the EUC program. As agents of the United States, the States and cooperating State agencies may not vary from the operating instructions in GAL 12-92 and all Changes without the prior approval of the Department of Labor. The following changes are made to Attachment A of GAL 12-92.

    1. On page 5 of Attachment A, subclauses (ii) and (iii) of Section I.C.3.f. are removed and new subclauses (ii) and (iii) are substituted to read as follows:

        (ii) The requirements of this subclause are met for any week if the national rate of total unemployment (seasonally adjusted) for each of the two most recent calendar months (not averaged) for which data are published before the close of such week is at least 6.8 percent, but is less than 7 percent, (but does not meet the requirements of the immediately following subclause).

        (iii) The requirements of this subclause are met for any week if the national rate of total unemployment (seasonally adjusted) for each of the two most recent calendar months (not averaged) for which data are published before the close of such week is less than 6.8 percent.

    2. In Section III.E.5. (page 35), delete "Within 10 calendar days" at the beginning of the first sentence and insert "As soon as is administratively feasible." After "Governor of a State" in the first paragraph, enter "(or Governor's designee)." After "Governor" at the end of the first sentence of the second paragraph, enter "(or Governor's designee)."

    After the second paragraph add the following new paragraph.

    "The Governor may delegate authority to make the election to the head of the State employment security agency or some other State official, in accordance with authority provided by State law. Evidence of such a delegation is to be supplied to the Department as soon as possible after the delegation. A new delegation of authority when a new Governor takes office is not necessary unless required by State law. Evidence of a new delegation of authority must be supplied to the Department if the person originally (or subsequently) delegated is changed."

  7. Action Required:SESA Administrators shall:

    1. Provide the above operating instructions to appropriate staff;

    2. Issue a public notice in the appropriate news media in the State rescinding any previous notice announcing the reduction in duration;

    3. Begin computing new EUC claims to reflect duration up to 26/20 weeks;

    4. Begin redetermining EUC claims effective on and after July 11, 1993, to reflect durations up to 26/20 weeks, and complete them as soon as possible after receipt of this Change

      4. Any State that has individually triggered to a lower level after July 10, should exercise caution to ensure redetermination of entitlement to the correct duration in effect at the time of the new EUC claim. Reimbursement for these redeterminations will be at the usual 20 minute rate; and,

    5. Identify each individual who chose to file a new claim for regular benefits instead of an EUC claim, under Section 101(f) of P.L. 102-318, on a claim effective between July 11, 1993, and date of implementation of the instructions in this directive. These individuals must be notified of the correct potential monetary entitlement to which they have a right under the EUC program and given an opportunity to change the election. Such notifications must be completed immediately after receipt of this Change