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house Bill H.R. 3979

Volunteers and Obamacare, with an Amendment that Extends Emergency Unemployment Insurance

What is House Bill H.R. 3979?

Originally, a bill that excludes volunteer hours of volunteer firefighters and emergency medical personnel from counting towards the calculation of the number of a firm’s full-time employees for purposes of certain provisions of the Affordable Health Care Act. The bill passed unanimously in the House and was sent to the Senate, where Majority Leader Reid (D-NV) employed the bill as a vehicle for provisions for extending unemployment insurance benefits, including those outlined here


Impacts emergency services volunteers, and the entities for which they volunteer, as well as those receiving unemployment benefits.

Cost of House Bill H.R. 3979

The CBO estimates no significant budgetary effect for solely the component of the bill regarding volunteers; the extension of unemployment benefits, however, would cost $10 billion, and Sen. Reid (D-NV) has stated that the costs would be offset via changes to a 2012 highway bill and extending customs user fees through 2024.

More Information


The Hill: Unemployment Bill Clears Hurdle in Senate (4/2/14) 

Of Note: 

House Speaker Boehner (R-OH) has said he will not consider any unemployment legislation that fails to include job-creating provisions, implying that when this bill is returned to the House, it will be rejected.


Emergency Unemployment Compensation Extension Act of 2014

Official Title

To authorize appropriations for fiscal year 2015 for military activities of the Department of Defense, for military construction, and for defense activities of the Department of Energy, to prescribe military personnel strengths for such fiscal year, and for other purposes.

bill Progress

  • EnactedDecember 19th, 2014
    The President signed this bill into law
  • The senate Passed April 7th, 2014
    Roll Call Vote 59 Yea / 38 Nay
  • The house Passed December 4th, 2014
    Roll Call Vote 300 Yea / 119 Nay
      house Committees
      Committee on Ways and Means
    IntroducedJanuary 31st, 2014

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