President Acts on Unemployment Insurance; Implementation Questions Present Roadblocks

August 13, 2020

On August 8, President Trump issued a presidential memorandum on unemployment assistance that would provide an additional $400 in weekly unemployment benefits to be shared between the states and federal government (25 percent and 75 percent, respectively). Previously, the CARES Act included a $600/week increase in supplemental federal unemployment benefits. Those benefits, however, expired on July 31. This presidential action would provide benefits retroactively from August 1 to December 6, 2020. Nevertheless, the action also presents a litany of legal, logistical, and implementation questions that must be resolved before could benefits flow, which would take time to unravel. AGC recognizes the importance of providing unemployment benefits during the global health crisis and encourages Congress to move toward a model that increases workforce participation—as opposed to creating high articfial barriers to such—and provides further investment in career and technical education.

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