U.S. senators have reached a bipartisan deal that should allow them to extend federal benefits to the long-term unemployed for five months, CNN reports.
Five Republicans have reportedly signed on to the bill, all but assuring that the $10 billion measure should pass the Democratic Senate with ease. The cost of the bill is expected to be absorbed by modifying federal pension law, and how companies contribute to pensions.
The vote is not expected until after a recess next week, and there is still the Republican-led House of Representatives with which to contend.
The program came to an end last year when it expired, and it was not renewed as members of Congress squabbled about the figures and the social impacts, CNN notes. Some of the GOP argued that the program discouraged people from looking for and finding jobs.
"There are a lot of good people looking for work, and I am pleased we're finally able to reach a strong, bipartisan consensus to get them some help," said Sen. Jack Reed (D-R.I.). "We're not at the finish line yet, but this is a bipartisan breakthrough.”
Read more at CNN.