North Carolina applies for funds for lost wage unemployment benefits

North Carolina news

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – The North Carolina Division of Unemployment Security applied for funds that would give people eligible a series of $300 weekly payments for lost wages, a news release said.

DES said Thursday applied to the Federal Emergency Management Agency after it learned state unemployment insurance trust fund dollars may not be used to pay the optional additional $100 supplement match funds.

The restriction meant the state would pursue the $300 option from the Lost Wages Assistance program.

DES said it has been working on reprogramming its benefits system to determine eligibility and set up the accounting process necessary to access grant funds and make payments.

“A more timely way to fund additional benefits for people in need would be to use the existing unemployment systems and programs” in place already “instead of implementing an entirely new program,” the release said.

North Carolina applied for approximately $321 million in federal funding that would provide $300 LWA payments to eligible people weekly for three weeks. If approved, North Carolinians may receive LWA for the benefit weeks ending Aug. 1, Aug. 8, and Aug. 15, the release said.

Claimants must be eligible for at least $100 a week in unemployment benefits from programs like state unemployment insurance, Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, and Extended Benefits. They must also be unemployed or partially unemployed because of disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

DES said it will provide additional information as it becomes available.

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