KS 3rd highest for fraudulent unemployment claims

Sen. Rick Billinger, KS 40th Senate District

Governor Kelly announced last Wednesday it will be necessary to shut down the processing system over the weekend for unemployment claims because of the thousands of fraudulent unemployment claims.

This will mean some jobless workers will have payments delayed as the state installs new anti-fraud protections. The Governor said the unemployment system will go down at 2 p.m. Saturday and will go back up a 7 a.m. Tuesday. During this time the state will not pay benefits and will work to catch up on claims when the system is back up.

It has been reported by the U.S. Department of Labor, as of January 6 Kansas received approximately 63,500 claims for unemployment benefits. This is the third highest number of any state, behind California and Illinois and ahead of Florida, New York, and Texas. 

These numbers are a signal that Kansas is possibly seeing thousands more fraudulent claims a week than the roughly 2,300 a day that the state Department of Labor says it is stopping.

The Governor’s announcement came shortly after GOP lawmakers said they will push to protect employers from being forced to cover the cost of fraudulent claims in ex-employees' names. They said the state Department of Labor does not have a handle on the problem and that they have not received enough data or answers.

Here is the link that individuals who receive a 1099 due to a fraudulent claim can go to and protest the 1099. If someone gets a 1099 for a fraudulent payment, they should protest it. They can do that starting Monday online at https://uiassistance.getkansasbenefits.gov/, or by calling the dedicated line at 

785-575-1461. Once we receive the protest, a corrected 1099-G will be sent to the claimant and the IRS. 

Abortion Amendment

This past week the Senate passed the Value Them Both Amendment 28-11 and this amendment was passed out of the House last week. Voters will have the right to vote on this amendment to the Kansas constitution on the August 2022 ballot. The adoption of the Value Them Both Amendment was made possible by a wide coalition of groups and individuals, including Kansans for Life, the Kansas Catholic Conference, and the Family Policy Alliance of Kansas, among others.

The Bill of Rights of the Kansas Constitution reads as follows: “All men are possessed of equal and inalienable natural rights, among which are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” The Value Them Both Amendment is necessary due to the April 26, 2019 decision by the Kansas Supreme Court which created an unlimited right to abortion in the 1859 Kansas Constitution, using the Kansas Bill of Rights as justification for their decision. Because of the Kansas Supreme Court’s ruling, existing bans on late-term and taxpayer-funded abortions are now in danger of being rendered unenforceable due to the strict scrutiny standard the court used.

Furthermore, the ruling allows violent live dismemberment abortions to continue and threatens these lifesaving limits: Parental consent for minors seeking an abortion, Informed consent, alerting women to potential health risks, 24-hour waiting period, Abortion clinic sanitation and safety standards.

It is an honor and pleasure to serve the 40th Senate District of Kansas. Please do not hesitate to contact me by e-mail at rick.billinger@senate.ks.gov. Call me with your questions or concerns. My office number is 785 296-7399 or my cell number is 785 899-4700.