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The House voted 147-0 Tuesday afternoon to approve legislation freezing unemployment insurance rates and sparing employers from a $420 million increase. The bill could surface for a Senate vote on Thursday.
Members of both branches have largely agreed all year that a first quarter unemployment insurance rate hike should be prevented, but legislation freezing the rates has been hung up due to disputes over other issues, such as the minimum wages and reforms to the jobless benefits system.
With the second quarter of the year underway, it appears the branches are poised to rush the rate freeze bill to Patrick's desk, perhaps as early as this week.