For Immediate Release
(HARRISBURG) – – The Senate Labor and Industry Committee today approved legislation to end so-called ‘triple dipping’ of Unemployment Compensation benefits by retirees. The practice involves an individual who collects a public pension or private retirement benefit while returning to temporary work, only to collect unemployment compensation when leaving the job. The Committee, chaired by Senator John R. Gordner (R-27), unanimously reported Senate Bill 297 by Senator Patricia Vance (R-31) to the full Senate for consideration.
“Under current law, there is no prohibition against an individual collecting unemployment if he or she leaves a temporary job to continue retirement or annuity benefits,” said Senator Gordner. “In the past three years, more than 600 state retirees have returned to work on a temporary basis, and have then collected $2 million in benefits while receiving a state pension.”
The Committee approved an amendment to the legislation to address concerns by the United States Department of Labor that the original bill was too strictly tailored to only address state annuitants. The amendment clarifies that any individual receiving retirement benefits who returns to temporary employment is ineligible for Unemployment Compensation.
“We’ve made great strides in the past two years to reform our Unemployment Compensation system, and we must continue to ensure that the system is strong to provide benefits to those who truly qualify,” said Senator Gordner.