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Georgia Dept of Labor Anticipates the Signing of the American Rescue Plan

Atlanta, GA – The Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) is awaiting the signing of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP) by President Biden that will extend potential unemployment insurance benefits for those still unemployed through September 6, 2021.  The ARP will also extend the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) weekly supplement of $300 for the additional 25 weeks of benefits.

“We will work with the USDOL to implement the new extension of benefits that are part of the American Rescue Plan,” said Commissioner of Labor Mark Butler.  “However, we have over 206,000 job postings available on Employ Georgia today reaching one of the highest job listings ever recorded on this site.  We will work diligently to support those Georgians looking to get back to work while also continuing to provide the financial bridge for those individuals still unemployed.”

After the bill is signed, the USDOL will issue guidance on the bill detailing the program requirements.

“If the bill is adopted in the next few days and the USDOL issues guidance on the extensions that does not include significant programming adjustments, we do not anticipate interruptions in payments for those currently receiving UI benefits,” said Commissioner Butler.  “We will meet with the USDOL following the signing to review the details of the implementation and subsequently update our system and programs.”

The GDOL announced today that Georgians have received more than $19.3 billion since March 21 of 2020, more than the past 45 years prior to the pandemic combined. Last week, the GDOL dispersed over $278 million in unemployment insurance (UI) benefits including regular unemployment insurance, Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), State Extended Benefits (SEB), and Lost Wages Assistance (LWA) supplements.

Today, over 206,000 jobs listings are online at https://bit.ly/36EA2vk for Georgians to access.  These listings could include multiple positions for each job indicating a much higher number of jobs available.  The GDOL offers online resources for finding a job, building a resume, and assisting with other reemployment needs.  Resources for reemployment assistance along with information on filing an unemployment claim and details on how employers can file partial claims can be found on the agency’s webpage at https://bit.ly/2ZudL0c.

Since the beginning of the pandemic in March of last year, the GDOL has processed 4,473,245 regular UI initial claims, more than the combined last nine years prior to the pandemic (4.0 million). Initial claims for the first 10 weeks of 2021 totaled 297,366, more than all of 2019 (291,962). Last week, regular UI initial claims totaled 28,387, up 2,940 over the week.  Additionally, the agency currently has 340,501 active PUA claims.

The sectors with the most weekly regular UI initial claims processed included Accommodation and Food Services, 5,336, Administrative and Support Services, 2,922, Manufacturing, 2,811, Retail Trade, 1,938, and Health Care, 1,609.

The number of initial claims filed throughout the United States for the week ending March 6 was 712,000, adecrease of 42,000 from the previous week’s revised level of 754,000.

UI benefits are taxable income and 1099-G tax forms are issued in accordance with federal law to report payments and all taxes withheld during each tax year. If you received a 1099-G tax form and did not file a UI claim yourself or your employer did not file one on your behalf, you may be the victim of UI fraud and should report the incident on the GDOL website at https://www.dol.state.ga.us/public/uiben/fraud/reportType. Select Report 1099 ID Theft at the bottom and follow the instructions.  If you received a 1099-G tax form and returned the benefits or wish to return the benefits, please see detailed instructions on next steps at https://dol.georgia.gov/blog/form-1099-g-tax-information.

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