CONCORD, N.H. – New Hampshire’s House sent Democrat Gov. Maggie Hassan a bill Wednesday that will allow a small group of jobless workers to continue to get unemployment benefits while they work to start their own businesses.

Hassan spokesman Marc Goldberg said the governor was a co-sponsor of a similar bill when she was in the Senate and will sign the latest version.

The Democratically controlled House voted 183-149 to pass the bill over Republican objections the bill would loosen reporting requirements for the jobless workers chosen for the program. House Republican Leader Gene Chandler said the bill unfairly made exceptions “for a small set of people, including giving benefits to someone without asking them to prove they are continuing to look for work, or allowing them to collect benefits while being able to earn unlimited income through their start-up business.”

But supporters said only a few workers would qualify for the special treatment. State Rep. Sally Kelly, D-Chichester, estimated that would be about 250 people. The bill would require the workers to work with the New Hampshire Small Business Development Center to create a business plan, receive business counseling and training.