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End to unemployment benefits may have positive effect on Central Texas

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Long-term unemployment benefits have come to an end for 1.3 million Americans, and many aren't happy about it. Some politicians say the economy is getting better, and believe long term benefits are not necessary anymore.

Local job placement agencies agree.

Unemployment benefits may be good for those who have no intention to work, but some, like Total Placement Staffing Solutions owner Tom Ramsey, think the free ride needs to stop here.

"There are a lot of people who just took advantage of it and stayed on," Ramsey said. "There are a number of people who truly need that. But that was more times than not, more mid-level or upper level employees because those were the jobs that were hit the hardest. Not the lower level positions. Not in our experience."

Not every person is taking advantage of the system. Few people, like one of our Facebook commentators, have said they have had a hard time finding a job and rely on the benefits as their search continues.

News Channel 25's John Elizondo spoke to several job placement agencies, and they all say the same thing. For every hard working individual out there looking for a job, there is usually many more trying to beat the system for a free pass.

"We find that a large majority of them are on unemployment," Ramsey said. "When you start talking with them about a position and interviewing with them, they are pretty quick to let you know they are not interested in looking right now. They have been on unemployment and they are waiting for it to run out."

According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, North Carolina ended their extended benefits in July 2013. Since then, the unemployment rate in that state alone has dropped a percentage point and a half.

Local agencies are hopeful that those same effects will be seen here in Central Texas.

"I think the fact that it is gone now will get a lot of people that were riding the system...I think it will give them the encouragement they need to get out and go back to work," Ramsey said. "Because most of these seem like very capable people and seem like they do have something to offer. But they don't have an incentive to do that, and I think this is an incentive now for them to go back. "

For FREE help to get back in the workplace, click here.

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