Gov. Nikki Haley trekked to the Upstate on Monday to sign a pair of bills that restricts who can collect state unemployment benefits.
Senate bill 1125 disallows claimants from receiving benefits if they become unemployed due to misconduct, a move Haley said was necessary due to millions of dollars of being spent on those who had been fired due to absenteeism, theft and other misconduct.
"This says we're not going to make it comfortable for you to not do your jobs," said Haley, flanked by Sen. Lee Bright.
The bill signing ceremony was held at Returnable Packaging Resource, or RPR near Pelham Road. RPR President Brian Laffler applauded the new laws, saying improper unemployment claims cost businesses like his money, which keeps him from spending more money on current employees and new hiring.
"This will do nothing but help the business community," Laffler said.
The second bill, House bill 4786 closes a loopholes Haley contends was being frequently abused by those in the education field. The law signed Monday prevents education workers from claiming unemployment benefits during regular periods off if they have a reasonable assurance of returning to work.
Haley said she still believed in drug testing as a precondition for unemployment benefits, but said the United States government had indicated to her its opposition to the way she planned on implementing it, which would be a single test before the distribution of any unemployment funds.