HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – Legislation heading to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives would free up $15 million to improve service in the state’s unemployment compensation centers.

Senators voted 39-8 on Wednesday for the bill. Its passage follows the December layoff of 499 workers after the Senate’s Republican majority and Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf quarreled over continuing state funding for the unemployment compensation system.

House Labor and Industry Committee Chairman Rob Kauffman says the Senate bill’s concept is on the right track. He expects to take action on it quickly.

The state Department of Labor and Industry couldn’t immediately detail how the $15 million would improve services.

Department officials told Senate Labor and Industry Committee Chairwoman Kim Ward that they could rehire 499 people through early September, or fewer people for the remainder of 2017.

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