Wisconsin Assembly Passes Unemployment Bill, Evers to Sign

Feb 23, 2021

A DWD employee shows the system he works with on a daily basis to process Wisconsinites' unemployment claims.
Credit Department of Workforce Development

The Wisconsin Assembly has overwhelmingly passed a bipartisan bill designed to jump-start updates to the state’s antiquated unemployment claims processing system. Gov. Tony Evers has promised to sign the bill which the Senate passed last week on a 27-3 vote. The Assembly passed it Tuesday 89-0. Evers has taken intense criticism for months over a backlog of unemployment claims stemming from the coronavirus pandemic. He has largely blamed the state’s antiquated, 50-year-old computer processing system for handling the claims. The bill as passed also waives the one-week waiting period for receiving unemployment benefits until March 14 and extends limited liability from COVID-related lawsuits to businesses, governments and schools.