MA Governor Files Bill to Lower Unemployment Insurance

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick is filing a bill aimed at lowering unemployment insurance rates and health care costs for businesses.

Patrick wants to prevent an automatic hike in the amount of money employers have to pay into the unemployment insurance trust fund for the fourth year in a row. He says it will translate into big savings for businesses:

“This will save employers an estimated 500 mill this year.  In the aggregate over the last four years through steps like this we will have saved employers approximately 1.7 billion dollars.”

Without this freeze, the average annual cost to businesses would rise to $935 per employee, up from $730 last year. He also proposed eliminating an annual fee of $295 dollars per employee that businesses must pay if they don’t make what the state deems a fair and reasonable contribution to their workers’ health insurance. Patrick says the so called fair share contribution program overlaps with a provision in the federal healthcare law set to take effect in 2014.