At Least 21 States Dropping $300-A-Week Federal Unemployment Benefits

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TOPLINE At least 21 states—all with Republican governors—are set to stop participating in the federal government’s supplemental unemployment benefits program, which provides an extra $300 a week to the jobless, as many Republican officials are claiming the payments disincentivize workers to get back on the job.

MissouriIowaMississippi and Alaska all plan to drop the benefits on June 12, which is the earliest date states are allowed to leave the program.

TexasOhioGeorgiaUtahOklahomaArkansas and South Dakota will cease payments on June 26.

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte (R) said he would withdraw the state from the program by June 27, also claiming Montana was being plagued by a labor shortage.

Montana will instead offer a one-time $1,200 bonus for returning to work, Gianforte said, with Oklahoma also offering a $1,200 incentive.

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster (R) said his state would end federal benefits at the end of June.

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey said his state will stop paying federal benefits on July 10, but the state will offer a $2,000 return-to-work bonus.

The $300-a-week federal payments, which are a reduced version of a $600 weekly benefit authorized last March under the CARES Act to help the millions of workers thrown out of work amidst the coronavirus pandemic, will continue until September 6 in states that don’t opt out of the federal program.


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