D.C. Act 23-14. Supporting Essential Workers Unemployment Insurance Emergency Amendment Act of 2019.
To amend, on an emergency basis, the District of Columbia Unemployment Compensation Act to provide that a furlough-excepted federal employee is eligible for unemployment benefits during a federal-government shutdown; and to amend the Federal Worker Housing Relief Emergency Act of 2019 to provide protections to employees of the District of Columbia Public Defender Service.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE COUNCIL OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, That this act may be cited as the "Supporting Essential Workers Unemployment Insurance Emergency Amendment Act of 2019".
Sec. 2. The District of Columbia Unemployment Compensation Act, approved August 28, 1935 (49 Stat. 946; D.C. Official Code § 51-101 et seq.), is amended as follows:
(a) Section 1(5) (D.C. Official Code § 51-101(5)) is amended to read as follows:
"(5) An individual shall be deemed "unemployed" with respect to any week during which:
"(A) The individual performs no service and with respect to which no earnings are payable to the individual or with respect to any week of less than full-time work if 66% of the earnings payable to the individual with respect to such week are less than the individual's weekly benefit amount plus $50; or
"(B)(i) The individual's earnings are funded through federal appropriations that have lapsed;
"(ii) The individual performed services as an excepted employee of the federal government and will not receive earnings from the federal government during the lapse in appropriations; and
"(iii) The individual was notified by his or her federal agency of his or her status as an excepted employee before the individual performed services during the lapse in appropriations.".
(b) A new section 10a is added to read as follows:
"Sec. 10a. Applicability to certain federal employees.
"(a) Notwithstanding any provision of this act, the Director may provide benefits to an individual who is determined to be unemployed pursuant to section 1(5)(B) (a "furlough-excepted federal employee"); provided, that the Director do so in a manner that is consistent with federal law.
"(b) If a furlough-excepted federal employee receives benefits pursuant to this section and, after the applicable lapse in appropriations ends, receives earnings attributable to the period for which the benefits were paid, the employee shall repay promptly to the District the benefits paid by the District for that period; provided, that the Director may for good cause waive this requirement.
"(c) No federal funds shall be used for the payment of benefits pursuant to this section or the payment of administrative costs to implement the provisions of this section.".
Sec. 3. Section 2(5) of the Federal Worker Housing Relief Emergency Act of 2019, passed on emergency basis on January 22, 2019 (Enrolled version of Bill 23-80), is amended by striking the phrase "government of the United States, or the District of Columbia Courts" and inserting the phrase "government of the United States, the District of Columbia Courts, or the District of Columbia Public Defender Service" in its place.
Sec. 4. Fiscal impact statement.
The Council adopts the fiscal impact statement of the Chief Financial Officer as the fiscal impact statement required by section 4a of the General Legislative Procedures Act of 1975, approved October 16, 2006 (120 Stat. 2038; D.C. Official Code § 1-301.47a).
Sec. 5. Effective date.
This act shall take effect following approval by the Mayor (or in the event of veto by the Mayor, action by the Council to override the veto), and shall remain in effect for no longer than 90 days, as provided for emergency acts of the Council of the District of Columbia in section 412(a) of the District of Columbia Home Rule Act, approved December 24, 1973 (87 Stat. 788; D.C. Official Code § 1-204.12(a)).