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Budget cuts to reduce some unemployment benefits

Some federal unemployment benefits will be reduced in Oregon because of the sequestration budget cuts, the Oregon Employment Department announced on Tuesday.

According to the department, individuals receiving Federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation, or EUC, will see a reduction in their weekly benefits of 10.7 percent. The reduction will begin the week of March 31 and be reflected in checks mailed the week of April 7.

More than 28,000 individuals are receiving EUC benefits, the department says. It will notify each claimant by mail in early April about the reduction.

Individuals receiving regular unemployment benefits will not be affected, the department says.

In addition, the department says, federal cuts to employment service state grants could result in the reduction of job search assistance and employer recruitment activities. Those impacts are still being assessed.

The EUC reductions are the first specific impacts of sequestration to be announced in Oregon since the cuts took effect on March 1. They are designed to reduce federal spending by $85 billion in the current fiscal year and approximately $1 trillion over 10 years. Some programs, including Medicare and Social Security, are exempt.