Final budget sent to Governor Snyder
Budget bills on their way to Governor Rick Snyder use a surplus in an unemployment fund to keep the spending plan in balance. But critics say that money should be set aside to pay back people wrongly accused of unemployment fraud.
About 50 thousand people were wrongly accused of filing false claims by a computerized system, and were forced to reimburse the state and pay a 400 percent penalty. They filed a lawsuit against the state, claiming hundreds of millions of dollars in damages.
Steve Gray is an attorney with the University of Michigan employment law clinic. That lawsuit is still working its way through the courts. But Gray says the state should set aside a 60 million surplus in the unemployment fund to start paying them back.
“I don’t they should be using it until everybody who has been harmed by this has been made whole.”
The state Senate leader says the money will be there if and when people need to be paid back.