Inslee Signs Bipartisan Bill to Support Business and Workers

Legislative Session, WBPA News,

For your general information, on Monday, February 8 Governor Jay Inslee signed a business relief package that curbs unemployment taxes and expands unemployment benefits. SB 5061 pushes the unemployment insurance tax increases to 2025, rather than taking effect in 2021. The legislation will also increase weekly unemployment benefits for the state's lowest earners from 15% to 20% starting in July 2021.

The bill also includes changes that would hopefully better prepare Washington state for a future health emergency.

The bill also caps certain tax rates through 2025 and will prevent a $1.7 billion increase in unemployment taxes over the next five years. The Legislature curbs more than $920 million in rate increases this year alone, Inslee said.

For more information, please see the below press release and attached Final Senate Bill Report on ESSB 5061.

February 8, 2021
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Inslee signs bipartisan bill to support business and workers

Gov. Jay Inslee today signed legislation providing relief for businesses and workers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. SB 5061 will increase minimum unemployment benefits for workers and provide significant tax relief for businesses over the next five years, to support recovery from the economic impacts of COVID shutdowns. The legislation, which was requested by the governor, is a critical piece of the state’s COVID-19 recovery plan. It passed with strong bipartisan support in both chambers.

COVID-19 has caused deep economic hardship for many workers and businesses. This bill, along with other relief we’ve provided, is another step in helping to mitigate these very difficult impacts.

Read the rest of the story on the governor's Medium page.