Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) isn’t a fan of President Barack Obama’s American Jobs Act, but he does like the idea of allowing people who are receiving unemployment benefits to work for free.
The plan is based on a program called Georgia Works which matches job seekers with employers. Under the plan, employers agree to provide up to eight weeks of on-the-job training. Workers, who can only work for 24 hours a week, continue to receive unemployment benefits instead of getting paid.
“The Georgia plan sounds pretty interesting,” Ryan told Fox News’ Chris Wallace Sunday. “I think that’s something we are looking at, which is unemployment reform.”
Ryan’s remarks echo House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s (R-VA) support of the idea.
“We stand ready to work with [President Obama] if there is interest in implementing a similar program on the federal level,” Cantor said.
According to data the Georgia Department of Labor provided to The Huffington Post’s Arthur Delaney, the program isn’t very successful.
Between 2003 and 2010, only 16.4 percent of people that participated in the program found work, about the same rate as those who were not participating. As of late August, there were only 19 trainees enrolled in Georgia Works.
The top weekly unemployment benefit in Georgia is about $330.
Watch this video from Fox’s Fox News Sunday, broadcast Sept. 18, 2011.