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2013 - 2014 LEGISLATURE
February 15, 2013 - Introduced by Representatives Brooks, Loudenbeck,
Ballweg, Knodl, J. Ott, Petryk, Thiesfeldt, Severson and Endsley,
cosponsored by Senators Farrow and Gudex. Referred to Committee on
Workforce Development.
AB15,1,5 1An Act to amend 108.04 (1) (a) (intro.), 108.04 (1) (b) 1., 108.04 (2) (a) 1., 108.04
2(2) (a) 2., 108.04 (2) (a) 3. (intro.), 108.04 (2) (bm), 108.05 (1) (q) (intro.), 108.05
3(3) (a), 108.05 (3) (c) (intro.) and 108.05 (3) (dm) (intro.); and to create 108.062
4of the statutes; relating to: payment of unemployment insurance benefits
5under a work-sharing program.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
Currently, if a claimant under the unemployment insurance (UI) law receives
no wages or certain other amounts that are treated as wages for a given week, the
claimant may receive the full benefit for that week to which the claimant is entitled
if the claimant meets eligibility requirements. However, with certain exceptions, if
a claimant earns wages or certain other amounts treated as wages in a given week,
the first $30 of the wages or other amounts are disregarded and the claimant's
weekly benefit payment is reduced by 67 percent of any remaining amount earned,
but no claimant is eligible to receive UI benefits for any week if the benefits would
be less than $5, and any wages that the claimant would have earned in any week for
work performed for his or her employer had the claimant accepted available work
from that employer are treated as wages earned for that week.
This bill permits an employer to create a work-sharing program within a work
unit of the employer. Before implementation of any program, an employer must
submit a work-share plan to the Department of Workforce Development (DWD) and
obtain DWD's approval of the plan. As a part of its submittal, the employer must

certify that its plan is in compliance with all requirements under the law. Under the
bill, a work-share program may be in effect for no longer than six months within a
five-year period and must include at least 10 percent of and at least 20 employees
in the work unit. Under the program, the working hours of all of the full-time
employees in the program are reduced in an equitable manner in lieu of a total layoff
of some of the employees and a continuation of full-time employment by the other
employees. The bill provides that a claimant who is included in a work-share
program may receive UI benefits during his or her continued employment with the
work-sharing employer in an amount equal to the claimant's benefit for total
unemployment multiplied by the same percentage reduction in normal working
hours that the claimant incurs under the program, or the benefit that would be
payable to the claimant under the current formula for payment of UI benefits for
partial unemployment, whichever is higher. A claimant who begins receiving UI
benefits before the effective period of a work-share program and who remains
eligible for benefits is eligible to receive work-share benefits up to the total amount
of the claimant's benefit entitlement and a claimant who has remaining benefit
entitlement after the effective period of a work-share program and who remains
eligible for UI benefits may continue to receive benefits until the entitlement is
exhausted. The bill does not affect eligibility for supplemental UI benefits such as
federal/state extended benefits, Wisconsin supplemental benefits, and special
additional federal benefits in the full amounts that would otherwise be payable.
Under the bill, a work-share program must exclude participation by employees
who are employed on a regular part-time, seasonal, temporary, or intermittent basis
and may only apply to employees who have been engaged in employment with the
employer for at least three months before the effective period of the program and who
have been regularly employed in that employment for an average of at least 32 hours
per week during that period. The bill provides that an employer that creates a
work-share program must maintain retirement plan and health insurance coverage
for employees who are included in the program during the effective period of the
program under the same terms and conditions as if the employees were not included
under the program. The bill permits DWD to revoke its approval of a work-share
plan for specified reasons and also permits an employer to terminate a work-share
program before the end of its scheduled effective period.
Currently, with certain exceptions, a claimant is eligible for UI benefits for any
week in which the claimant earns no wages only if the claimant is available for work
within that week, is registered for work during that week, and conducts a reasonable
search for suitable work during that week. This bill provides that a claimant who
is receiving UI benefits for any week in which he or she is included in a work-share
program need not be available for work in that week other than for the normal hours
of work that the employer worked for the work-share employer immediately before
the effective period of the work-share program. The bill also provides that the
requirements to register for work and conduct a reasonable search for suitable work
are waived during each week that an employee included in a work-share agreement
is receiving benefits, during the effective period of the agreement.

Under recent federal legislation, the federal government participates in the
cost of administration of qualifying work-share programs and payment of benefits
to participating employees. The bill directs DWD to seek full federal financial
participation in the payment of these costs by this state.
The bill becomes effective on June 30, 2013, but the bill provides that DWD may
apply to the Joint Committee on Finance to approve, and the committee may
approve, a delay in implementation of the bill until a date specified by the committee,
which may be no later than December 31, 2013.
For further information see the state fiscal estimate, which will be printed as
an appendix to this bill.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
AB15, s. 1 1Section 1. 108.04 (1) (a) (intro.) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB15,3,42 108.04 (1) (a) (intro.) If Except as provided in s. 108.062 (10), if an employee
3is with due notice called on by his or her current employing unit to report for work
4actually available within a given week and is unavailable for, or unable to perform:
AB15, s. 2 5Section 2. 108.04 (1) (b) 1. of the statutes is amended to read:
AB15,3,126 108.04 (1) (b) 1. Except as provided in subd. 2. and s. 108.062 (10), if an
7employee's employment is suspended by the employee or the employee's employer or
8an employee is terminated by the employee's employer, due to the employee's
9unavailability for work or inability to perform suitable work otherwise available
10with the employee's employer, or if the employee is on a leave of absence, the
11employee is ineligible for benefits while the employee is unable to work or
12unavailable for work.
AB15, s. 3 13Section 3. 108.04 (2) (a) 1. of the statutes is amended to read:
AB15,3,1514 108.04 (2) (a) 1. The Except as provided in s. 108.062 (10), the individual is able
15to work and available for work during that week;
AB15, s. 4 16Section 4. 108.04 (2) (a) 2. of the statutes is amended to read:
AB15,4,2
1108.04 (2) (a) 2. As Except as provided in s. 108.062 (10m), as of that week, the
2individual has registered for work; and
AB15, s. 5 3Section 5. 108.04 (2) (a) 3. (intro.) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB15,4,134 108.04 (2) (a) 3. (intro.) The individual conducts a reasonable search for
5suitable work during that week, unless the search requirement is waived under par.
6(b) or s. 108.062 (10m). The search for suitable work must include 2 actions that
7constitute a reasonable search as prescribed by rule of the department. This
8subdivision does not apply to an individual if the department determines that the
9individual is currently laid off from employment with an employer but there is a
10reasonable expectation of reemployment of the individual by that employer. In
11determining whether the individual has a reasonable expectation of reemployment
12by an employer, the department shall request the employer to verify the individual's
13employment status and shall also consider other factors, including:
AB15, s. 6 14Section 6. 108.04 (2) (bm) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB15,4,1915 108.04 (2) (bm) A claimant is ineligible to receive benefits for any week for
16which there is a determination that the claimant failed to conduct a reasonable
17search for suitable work and the department has not waived the search requirement
18under par. (b) or s. 108.062 (10m). If the department has paid benefits to a claimant
19for any such week, the department may recover the overpayment under s. 108.22 (8).
AB15, s. 7 20Section 7. 108.05 (1) (q) (intro.) of the statutes is amended to read
AB15,5,921 108.05 (1) (q) (intro.) Each Except as provided in s. 108.062 (6), each eligible
22employee shall be paid benefits for each week of total unemployment that
23commences on or after January 4, 2009, at the weekly benefit rate specified in this
24paragraph. Unless sub. (1m) applies, the weekly benefit rate shall equal 4 percent
25of the employee's base period wages that were paid during that quarter of the

1employee's base period in which the employee was paid the highest total wages,
2rounded down to the nearest whole dollar, except that, if that amount is less than the
3minimum amount shown in the following schedule, no benefits are payable to the
4employee and, if that amount is more than the maximum amount shown in the
5following schedule, the employee's weekly benefit rate shall be the maximum
6amount shown in the following schedule and except that, if the employee's benefits
7are exhausted during any week under s. 108.06 (1), the employee shall be paid the
8remaining amount of benefits payable to the employee in lieu of the amount shown
9in the following schedule: [See Figure 108.05 (1) (q) following]
AB15, s. 8 10Section 8. 108.05 (3) (a) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB15,5,2411 108.05 (3) (a) Except as provided in pars. (c), (d) and (dm) and s. 108.062, if an
12eligible employee earns wages in a given week, the first $30 of the wages shall be
13disregarded and the employee's applicable weekly benefit payment shall be reduced
14by 67% of the remaining amount, except that no such employee is eligible for benefits
15if the employee's benefit payment would be less than $5 for any week. For purposes
16of this paragraph, "wages" includes any salary reduction amounts earned that are
17not wages and that are deducted from the salary of a claimant by an employer
18pursuant to a salary reduction agreement under a cafeteria plan, within the meaning
19of 26 USC 125, and any amount that a claimant would have earned in available work
20under s. 108.04 (1) (a) which is treated as wages under s. 108.04 (1) (bm), but excludes
21any amount that a claimant earns for services performed as a volunteer fire fighter,
22volunteer emergency medical technician, or volunteer first responder. In applying
23this paragraph, the department shall disregard discrepancies of less than $2
24between wages reported by employees and employers.
AB15, s. 9 25Section 9. 108.05 (3) (c) (intro.) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB15,6,4
1108.05 (3) (c) (intro.) A Except when otherwise authorized in an approved
2work-share program under s. 108.062, a
claimant is ineligible to receive any benefits
3for a week in which one or more of the following applies to the claimant for 32 or more
4hours in that week:
AB15, s. 10 5Section 10. 108.05 (3) (dm) (intro.) of the statutes is amended to read:
AB15,6,86 108.05 (3) (dm) (intro.) A Except when otherwise authorized in an approved
7work-share program under s. 108.062, a
claimant is ineligible to receive any benefits
8for a week if the claimant receives from one or more employers:
AB15, s. 11 9Section 11. 108.062 of the statutes is created to read:
AB15,6,11 10108.062 Work-share programs; benefit payments. (1) Definitions. In
11this section:
AB15,6,1612 (a) "Regular benefits" means benefits payable to an individual under this
13chapter or any other state law, including benefits payable to federal civilian
14employees and to former military personnel pursuant to 5 USC ch. 85, other than
15Wisconsin supplemental benefits, extended benefits, and additional benefits as
16defined in P.L. 91-373.
AB15,6,1917 (b) "Work-share program" means a program approved by the department
18under which the hours of work of employees in a work unit are reduced in lieu of a
19layoff of one or more employees in the work unit.
AB15,6,2220 (c) "Work unit" means an operational unit of employees designated by an
21employer for purposes of a work-share program, which may include more than one
22work site.
AB15,7,2 23(2) Elements of plan. Any employer may create a work-share program. Prior
24to implementing a work-share program, an employer shall submit a work-share
25plan for the approval of the department. In its submittal, the employer shall certify

1that its plan is in compliance with all requirements under this section. Each plan
2shall:
AB15,7,53 (a) Specify the work unit in which the plan will be implemented, the affected
4positions, and the names of the employees filling those positions on the date of
5submittal.
AB15,7,76 (b) Provide for inclusion of at least 10 percent of the employees in the affected
7work unit on the date of submittal.
AB15,7,98 (c) Provide for initial coverage under the plan of at least 20 positions that are
9filled on the effective date of the work-share program.
AB15,7,1110 (d) Specify the period when the plan will be in effect, which may not exceed 6
11months in any 5-year period within the same work unit.
AB15,7,1312 (e) Provide for apportionment of reduced working hours equitably among
13employees in the work-share program.
AB15,7,1514 (f) Exclude participation by employees who are employed on a regular
15part-time, seasonal, temporary, or intermittent basis.
AB15,7,1916 (g) Apply only to employees who have been engaged in employment with the
17employer for a period of at least 3 months on the effective date of the work-share
18program and who are regularly employed by the employer in that employment for
19an average of at least 32 hours per week during that period.
AB15,7,2420 (h) Specify the normal average hours per week worked by the employees in the
21work unit and the intended reduction or range of reduction in the average hours of
22work per week worked by the employees under the plan, which shall be at least 10
23percent but not more than 50 percent of the normal hours per work of the employees
24included under the plan.
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