Adopted

Redraft 21

Long-term Unemployment

Ms. Candaras and Mr. Barrett moved that the bill be amended by inserting after section __ the following new section:-

“SECTION 16A. There shall be a special commission created to conduct an investigation and a study on the impact of unemployment on: (i) unemployment claimants who are over the age of 40, (ii) unemployment claimants experiencing long-term unemployment and (iii) unemployment claimants over the age of 40 experiencing long-term unemployment. For the purposes of this section, the term “long-term unemployment” shall mean unemployment lasting longer than 27 weeks.

The commission shall consist of 15 members: the house and senate chairs of the joint committee on economic development and emerging technologies, who shall serve as co-chairs of the commission; the house and senate chairs of the joint committee on labor and workforce development; the secretary of labor and workforce development or a designee; the secretary of housing and economic development or a designee; the secretary of elder affairs or a designee; a representative of the federal reserve bank of Boston; the attorney general or a designee; a representative of Operation A.B.L.E. of Greater Boston; a representative of the Massachusetts Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives; 1 member who shall be appointed by the governor who shall be a health care expert with a specialty in gerontology; a representative from the National Association of Elder Law Attorneys or a designee; and 2 members associated with universities, each of whom shall have expertise in economics and employment and 1 of whom shall be appointed by the minority leader of the senate and 1 of whom shall be appointed by the minority leader of the house of representatives. The commission shall consult with a representative of a regional employment board for each county of the commonwealth, a representative of the AARP, the United States department of labor, employment and training division and the Sloan Center on Aging and Work at Boston College.

The study shall include, but not be limited to: (i) the economic and social cost of older, long-term unemployed or both older and long-term unemployed workers, (ii) an analysis of the unemployment system of the commonwealth specific to the effectiveness of existing laws and programs in providing retraining or re-employment opportunities to older, long-term unemployed or both older and long-term unemployed workers, (iii) the effect of the length of unemployment on the older worker and (iv) the likelihood that the older worker will be offered job retraining opportunities and return to full employment. The commission shall make recommendations for possible changes to programming for older, long-term unemployed or both older and long-term unemployed workers, including an outline of possible pilot programs or supplemental unemployment programs focused on older, long-term unemployed or both older and long-term unemployed workers.

The commission shall report the results of its investigation and study, together with drafts of legislation, if needed, to implement its recommendations, by filing the report with the clerks of the senate and house of representatives, the joint committee on economic development and emerging technologies, the joint committee on labor and workforce development, the joint committee on elder affairs and the house and senate committees on ways and means, not later than January 31, 2015. "