ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WDVM) — Maryland will discontinue enhanced pandemic federal unemployment benefits and reinstate work-search requirements on July 4, which was met with mixed reactions.
For example, Senate President Bill Ferguson in a statement said he urges the Governor to reverse or delay this decision. Governor Hogan says his mind will not change and residents should prepare.
This decision comes while the number of job openings nationwide jumped to a record high of 9.3 million. Also, the latest job report shows more than 500,000 jobs were added to the economy and currently the unemployment rate is 5.8 percent, which is the lowest since the pandemic began. Hogan says, that with the state’s cited health and economic recovery metrics– it’s time for people to get back to work.
Hogan said, “I think it’s the right decision that most governors agree on, and even the Biden administration is starting to come around to that position.”
Hogan added that employers across the state are eager to hire such as Amazon Air’s Baltimore location, which he just visited that has created 1,200 jobs. Pandemic unemployment is incentivizing workers to stay at home.
Hogan said, “I was hearing from hundreds of businesses every day saying we can’t get people back to work. And we currently have 9.3 million jobs available, more than ever before in the past 20 years. People have can’t just do what they’ve done for 52 weeks in a row.”
The state Department of Labor has sent emails to every person detailing requirements come July 4th but this doesn’t mean you will be approved and claimants must be actively searching for work by “engaging in three reemployment activities each week.”
Hogan said, “If your time’s up, you have to start over, and people are upset about that, but that’s just what the federal law is. Some people won’t be eligible, by the way, after a year, so some people are not going to get benefits because their time is up.”
For a list of Maryland job listings, job fairs, and job centers that offer resources–click here.