Lawmakers make Plea for Unemployment Funds

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Some Democratic lawmakers are calling on
Gov. Rick Perry to accept unemployment money in the federal stimulus package.

Texas could receive $555 million in federal stimulus money if it changes the law to allow more people to qualify. Perry has said he is opposed to using the federal rescue money to expand programs.

"Think of it as a bridge to help Texans get over the troubled waters of this economy," said Sen. Leticia Van de Putte, D-San Antonio, said Tuesday.

Sen. Eliot Shapleigh, D-El Paso, said not taking the money would be a "profound irresponsibility."

The unemployment compensation trust fund is expected to fall below the legally required balance by October.

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