After weeks of partisan sniping, Congress finally passed an extension of unemployment benefits last week, with President Obama signing the bill on Friday. Costing $18 billion, the extension will guarantee payments through early June, and will also allow people whose benefits expired on April 5 to apply retroactively. That's the good news. Now for the bad: the Bureau of Labor Statistics' initial claims for unemployment benefits were up 24,000, rising for the second week running.
Meanwhile, NEWSWEEK continues to scour online job boards to track the best listings with salaries of $100,000 or more. This week's picks from Indeed, Vault, and Simply Hired:
Principal C++ Software Engineer
A software company in Cambridge, Mass., has a plum job for an engineer with extensive experience in C++ and database internals, especially one who's made some creative contributions to the field. The job pays up to $160,000.
Pro: A great salary in a hip, intellectual town.
Con: If you're not already in the Boston area, you're not in the running for this post. Only local candidates need apply.
Supervisory Museum Curator, U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs
The federal government is looking for a manager in Reston, Va., who will help catalog and conserve artifacts and other museum property and ensure compliance with federal laws related to Native American relics.
Pro: Great government benefits and job security.
Con: It'll be tough to break in without prior federal experience or niche expertise with Native American artifacts.
Emergency Room Veterinarian, Katonah Bedford Veterinary Center
An animal hospital one hour north of New York needs a vet to staff its 24-hour clinic. You'll need to be a fully trained animal doc, with a residency under your belt and ER experience.
Pro: The hospital's facilities are state-of-the-art.
Con: Don't expect to relax. An animal ER has as much pressure and as heavy a workload as the human variety.
International Travel Counselor, Carlson Wagonlit Travel
Carlson Wagonlit needs a savvy travel agent to work onsite with a client in Boston. The agent will manage elaborate itineraries worldwide, dealing with everything from tickets to visas to immunization requirements.
Pro: You'll get to work with an interesting range of multicultural and multilingual clients.
Con: They'll be doing the traveling; you'll be stuck in front of a computer in Boston.
Farm Manager and Director of Agricultural Programs, Paul Quinn College
Paul Quinn College, a historically black school in Dallas, is searching for someone to oversee its agricultural operations, instruct students in modern growing methods, and coordinate volunteers for an urban farm located in a former football stadium.
Pro: Work outside all year, with flexible hours during the off-season (from December to March).
Con: There's no guarantee of tenure.