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NM cracks down on unemployment fraud

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SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico labor officials say they have cut the unemployment insurance fraud rate over the past year and continue to crack down on improper payments.

The New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions says the state now leads the nation in reducing improper payments. Between 2011 and 2012, the improper payment rate dropped to under 11 percent.

Gov. Susana Martinez says the progress is a testament to her administration's commitment to cracking down on fraud and strengthening the system for businesses and workers.

More initiatives are planned next year to keep fraud rates down.

In January, the state will launch a new system under which jobless New Mexicans will be able to apply online for benefits. The system will also help employers by allowing them to electronically submit wage reports as well as pay taxes and track their accounts.