Congresswoman Lujan Grisham: NM Economy Lost Over $1.7 Million This Week Alone Due to Unemployment Insurance Expiration

Over the weekend, Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham (NM-01) continued to urge Congress to renew federal unemployment insurance following a report finding that the expiration of the program on December 28 has already cost the New Mexico economy more than $1.7 million.

The analysis, prepared by the House Ways and Means Committee Democrats, spells out how much federal funding each state is going without in the first week since the federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) program expired. In New Mexico, 6,000 jobseekers lost an average $288.66 weekly benefit for a statewide economic impact of $1,731,960. Nationally, the expiration of the EUC program has cost state economies more than $400 million. These estimates are conservative because they only take into account the total dollar amount provided per week by the now-expired EUC program. Economists generally multiply these estimates by 1.5 to 2 to show the true economic impact.

“Just one week after 6,000 New Mexicans saw their unemployment insurance suddenly disappear, our state’s economy is already feeling the consequences,” Rep. Lujan Grisham said. “The longer Congress drags its feet, the negative effects will only worsen as hundreds of additional New Mexicans lose this vital lifeline every week. When Congress reconvenes, we should immediately renew unemployment insurance – not only for jobseekers who rely on this assistance to make ends meet, but also for the local businesses that benefit when these individuals can purchase groceries, fill their gas tanks and pay their bills.”

Congresswoman Lujan Grisham is a cosponsor of the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Extension Act of 2013 (H.R. 3546), legislation which would renew the Emergency Unemployment Compensation program through the end of 2014.