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State offers up more than $18 million in unemployment benefits, more help available

More than $18 million has already been paid to the 17,000 Minnesotans receiving Federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC), according to Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development

Commissioner (DEED) Dan McElroy.

On July 1, Gov. Tim Pawlenty authorized Minnesota 's participation in the federal EUC program that was passed by Congress. The federal program provides up to 13 additional weeks of benefits to eligible workers who exhausted their regular state unemployment benefits after April 30, 2007 and are still seeking employment.

"We are pleased that we have been able to assist approximately 17,000

Minnesotans who are unemployed with emergency unemployment compensation," said DEED Commissioner Dan McElroy. "We encourage unemployed workers who have exhausted their benefits and are still seeking employment to apply for the program."

Last month DEED notified approximately 50,000 people who are potentially eligible for the extended benefits. The EUC program expires on June 30, 2009.

Eligible individuals may apply for this federal extension online or by phone.

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