- President Trump ordered Governors to work with FEMA to set up a “Lost Wages Assistance Program”
- $300 weekly federal payments will supplement Louisiana unemployed who are receiving at least $100 in weekly unemployment;
- Economists estimate that the federal supplement will last only one to two months before the money allocated runs out.
Lost Wages Assistance Program
On Saturday, President Trump ordered Governors to work with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to set up a “Lost Wages Assistance Program” to distribute supplement payments of up to $400 to the 30 million who are unemployed. The FEMA Disaster Relief Fund would contribute up to $44 Billion. Louisiana would have been responsible for payment of $100 of the $400 supplemental payment but has been granted an exemption to count amounts already paid in weekly unemployment towards the $100 per week obligation.
Until July 31, 2020, The Cares Act provided a $600 per weekly federal supplement to anyone qualified for $1 dollar of Louisiana Unemployment Benefits or Pandemic Unemployment Benefits. Louisiana has an unemployment rate of 9.7%.
The $600 payment ended because The US House and Senate could not agree on an extension. Both believe an extension is necessary. The Senate wanted a $200 per week supplement and the US House, a $600 a week supplement. The President split the difference and signed an executive order for a $400 per week payment and required States to pay $100 of the $400 weekly amount.
Louisiana has opted to pay $300 per week supplement to those who receive at least $100 in unemployment benefits. The US Department of Labor clarified States may count amounts currently paid to unemployment insurance beneficiaries towards the Sate’s $100 per week obligation.
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