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Senator Warner joined his colleagues yesterday in a unanimous bipartisan vote to temporarily extend unemployment benefits for millions of Americans who are out of work.  

Under the legislation approved by the Senate, unemployed workers in Virginia will qualify for an additional 14 weeks of benefits.  In those states where the unemployment rate is over 8.5 percent, individuals will receive 20 weeks of jobless benefits.  

For more information on job assistance services or to apply for unemployment benefits, visit the Virginia Employment Commission at

Virginia's September unemployment rate was 6.6 percent -- about three-points below the U.S. jobless rate and the fifth-lowest state unemployment rate in the country. 

"It is my hope that this legislation will quickly offer additional temporary support to Virginia families who continue to face challenges finding work in this tough economy," Senator Warner said. 

States like Virginia, where unemployment rates typically are below 8.5 percent, were included in the legislation at the urging of Senator Warner and his colleagues.   

The bill also includes a tax break that allows small business owners to carry back losses to get refunds on taxes paid over the past five years. Experts say this is one of the few ways to use the tax code to actually put cash into the hands of businesses very quickly.

The cost of the measure is covered by a delay in a tax break that was scheduled for large, multinational companies.