Thousands of people in the Washington area and hundreds of thousands more across the country are waiting longer than they should for unemployment benefits at a time when they need the money the most because rising joblessness is overwhelming claims offices, records show.
The problem is compounded by a simultaneous decrease in federal funding, which has reduced staffing at some local government offices. The result is that many states, including Maryland and Virginia, and the District are failing to meet federal guidelines that require unemployment claims, appeals and benefit payments to be processed in a timely manner, the records show.
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