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Savings on the way for Oklahoma employers as unemployment trust fund hits record

State unemployment insurance fund balance tops $1 billion for the first time.
FROM STAFF REPORTS Published: August 15, 2013

In brief


may get

cost break

Many state businesses are expected to pay less into Oklahoma's unemployment insurance trust fund in 2014 after the fund balance recently topped $1 billion for the first time.

The Oklahoma Employment Security Commission uses the fund to pay regular state unemployment benefits to qualified workers.

The trust fund is paid for by contributions from Oklahoma employers.

The commission calculates individual employer contribution rates for the following year based on past total benefits payments and the trust fund balance.

For 2014, the contributions of most Oklahoma employers will drop considerably due in part to the solvency of the unemployment insurance trust fund. Individual businesses will be notified of their 2014 rates in September.

“Because of improved conditions, we expect to see a significant tax cut for Oklahoma employers in 2014,” said Lynn Gray, director of the commission's Economic Research & Analysis division.

“While the overall condition of the economy will play a role in exactly how large the cut will be, it's quite possible that we will see a decline in tax collections of between $175 million and $225 million.”

Oklahoma was one of only 19 states that did not borrow money from the federal government in recent years to continue making unemployment insurance benefit payments.

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