Law requiring drug screenings for unemployment benefits stalled - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

Law requiring drug screenings for unemployment benefits stalled

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SB 21 would implement drug screenings for certain people seeking unemployment benefits. SB 21 would implement drug screenings for certain people seeking unemployment benefits.
TYLER, TX (KLTV) - A new Texas law that would mandate drug tests for applicants seeking unemployment benefits has been stalled.

Senate Bill 21, outlying the procedure for those seeking unemployment benefits for jobs that require drug screenings, cannot go into effect until the United States Labor Department sets the necessary rules for the drug screenings. The bill should have gone into effect on September 1, 2013.

For people seeking unemployment, the previous law stated that they could receive unemployment benefits as long as they were still available to work. Recently, a bill was passed in the Texas House and Senate amending the previous law to specify the rules for people seeking unemployment for a job that requires drug screenings.

If someone is seeking unemployment benefits, and are only available to work for jobs that require pre-employment drug screenings, then the person will have to regularly comply with drug screenings administered by the Texas Workforce Commission. If the person does not pass the drug screenings, they will not be able to receive the unemployment benefits.

The Texas Workforce Commission cannot administer this law until the U.S. Labor Department creates the necessary rules for these drug screenings. The start date for implementing the new law has not been set.

SB 21 was passed by the Senate on April 11, 2013, the House on May 22, 2013, and signed by the Governor on June 14, 2013.

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