"We also have to think about the human costs, and I don't see it as a balanced package because the rate increases of business only go up until the debt is paid off, and they are temporary," Ross said. "But the changes to our unemployment compensation system become permanent."

Republican committee leaders refused to consider two amendments and the committee defeated two others, including one that would have reduced the maximum weekly benefits cap to $425 and required business to pay higher state unemployment taxes to pay for the change.

The bill also must go to the Senate, where support also is expected. New GOP Gov. Pat McCrory has said an unemployment debt fix was one of his early priorities but he hasn't said publicly whether he supports starting July 1 and ceding the federal benefits.

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