By The Associated Press

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Maryland lawmakers plan to submit legislation to allow federal employees who must work during a government shutdown without pay to collect unemployment insurance.

Del. Jessica Feldmark, a Howard County Democrat, said she planned to file the legislation Monday. She says it’s an important step “should we find ourselves in the same situation in three weeks,” when current funding for the government ends.

She spoke about the legislation during a panel meeting on federal relations, which discussed the federal government shutdown that ended Friday.

While states saw more unemployment claims from federal workers during the record-long shutdown of 35 days, the U.S. Labor Department issued guidance saying employees who worked during the shutdown were ineligible for unemployment insurance.

Feldmark says she believes it’s within the state’s discretion to extend the insurance.