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Arizona Senate passes bill that would cut unemployment benefits

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The Arizona Senate has approved a bill that would cut the number of weeks people can receive unemployment benefits.

Senate Bill 1167 would cut the number of weeks individuals can receive unemployment benefits from the current 24 weeks to 12 when the unemployment rate dips below 5%.

An additional week would be gradually added depending on the jobless rate, but payments would ultimately be capped at 20 weeks.

Opponents of the bill say it would disproportionately impact rural areas that have significantly higher unemployment rates than metro areas.

The bill cleared the Senate along party lines on Wednesday. It will now go to the House of Representatives.