Murkowski Statement on Unemployment Insurance Extension and Tax Relief Bill Vote

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, issued the following statement on her vote in favor of an unemployment insurance extension and tax relief bill that passed the Senate today 98 – 0.

“Like the rest of the nation, Alaska is seeing job losses as the result of the economic crisis,” Murkowski said. “Recent data from the Alaska Department of Labor shows that 2,749 Alaskans would be eligible for unemployment benefits under the Senate-passed legislation. It is important to ensure that Alaskans impacted by the economic downturn are protected from persistent unemployment. These are people who want to work, but are unable to find jobs in this economy.

“The Senate bill also would extend the $8,000 homebuyer tax credit for five months, and provide a $6,500 tax credit for those who have owned their home for five years and purchase a new residence. The credit is spurring more home sales, which in turn is stabilizing waning property values. Although the housing market has yet to recover, extending the credit will get us to recovery sooner.”