Connecticut offering $1,000 bonus to lure unemployed back to work

Author : jihanpermatah56
Publish Date : 2021-05-28 19:11:20


Connecticut offering $1,000 bonus to lure unemployed back to work

The state of Connecticut said this week it'll dole out $1,000 to constituents who get off the employment sideline and head back to work.

And on the same day in Oklahoma, Gov. Kevin Stitt announced that his state would opt out of a federal unemployment bonus program, also in hopes of juicing the slowing jobs market.

Such are the carrot-and-stick strategies policymakers across America are employing in hopes getting the national economy, battered by more than a year of coronavirus-related slowdowns, revving again.

Even as deaths and rates of Covid-19 spread have slowed, employers have said their help wanted notices have been collecting dust as potential workers stay home.

“It’s a giant nightmare for anybody to get anybody to work. We’re running on a skeleton crew. We’re severely understaffed in the kitchen, in the dining room,” Joe Buccheri, owner of Joey B’s Restaurant in Berlin, Connecticut, told NBC Connecticut.

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With warmer weather now arriving and some customers still hesitant to dine inside, Buccheri said he wants to offer an alfresco option — if only he had the workers to staff it.

“I have people calling for interviews twice a day and they’re no shows. Nobody shows up so it’s very hard to find help,” Buccheri said.

Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont, a Democrat, announced his "Back to Work CT"program, which aims to give one-time $1,000 bonuses to 10,000 state residents who go back to work. Recipients must have filed a state unemployment claim before May 30 and then obtain and maintain a full-time job for eight straight weeks.

"I’m hearing a lot of good feedback ... from restaurants, service sector, retail, folks that said we’re having a harder time getting people back into the workforce," Lamont told MSNBC on Friday.

Lamont's announcement came the same day that Stitt in Oklahoma quoted Ronald Reagan in ending a $300-a-week supplemental unemployment benefit next month.

His state will offer a $1,200 stipend for the first 20,000 workers who get off unemployment and work at least 32 hours per week at a qualifying job.

“As Ronald Reagan once said, the best social program is a job,” Stitt, a Republican, said at a trucking company in Oklahoma City. “These Oklahoma companies are open for business and ready to grow.”

Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Wyoming are among several other states soon opting out of federal employment benefits boosts.

And earlier this week in New Hampshire, Gov. Chris Sununu, a Republican, said his state was ending the $300 benefit and introducing a bonus of $500 to $1,000 for unemployed people who find steady work.

"We have plenty of jobs and we want folks to get back out there," Sununu said Tuesday.

The lure of employment benefits is just one factor in what's keeping some Americans at home, rather than at work.

Child care issues and the pandemic's ongoing threat, especially for workers who'd come in close contact with a high number of customers, further complicate the jobs picture.

"All those things might make people, especially in low-paid positions, reluctant to take a job and perhaps reduce their family's capacity to pay for its bills," said Gary Burtless, an economist and senior fellow at the Brookings Institution.

"Why should they make financial sacrifices on behalf of an industry which historically has not paid them very good wages and not offered them very good benefits, and so on?"

The state of Connecticut said this week it'll dole out $1,000 to constituents who get off the employment sideline and head back to work.

And on the same day in Oklahoma, Gov. Kevin Stitt announced that his state would opt out of a federal unemployment bonus program, also in hopes of juicing the slowing jobs market.

Such are the carrot-and-stick strategies policymakers across America are employing in hopes getting the national economy, battered by more than a year of coronavirus-related slowdowns, revving again.

Even as deaths and rates of Covid-19 spread have slowed, employers have said their help wanted notices have been collecting dust as potential workers stay home.

“It’s a giant nightmare for anybody to get anybody to work. We’re running on a skeleton crew. We’re severely understaffed in the kitchen, in the dining room,” Joe Buccheri, owner of Joey B’s Restaurant in Berlin, Connecticut, told NBC Connecticut.

With warmer weather now arriving and some customers still hesitant to dine inside, Buccheri said he wants to offer an alfresco option — if only he had the workers to staff it.

“I have people calling for interviews twice a day and they’re no shows. Nobody shows up so it’s very hard to find help,” Buccheri said.

Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont, a Democrat, announced his "Back to Work CT"program, which aims to give one-time $1,000 bonuses to 10,000 state residents who go back to work. Recipients must have filed a state unemployment claim before May 30 and then obtain and maintain a full-time job for eight straight weeks.

"I’m hearing a lot of good feedback ... from restaurants, service sector, retail, folks that said we’re having a harder time getting people back into the workforce," Lamont told MSNBC on Friday.

Lamont's announcement came the same day that Stitt in Oklahoma quoted Ronald Reagan in ending a $300-a-week supplemental unemployment benefit next month.

His state will offer a $1,200 stipend for the first 20,000 workers who get off unemployment and work at least 32 hours per week at a qualifying job.

“As Ronald Reagan once said, the best social program is a job,” Stitt, a Republican, said at a trucking company in Oklahoma City. “These Oklahoma companies are open for business and ready to grow.”

Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Wyoming are among several other states soon opting out of federal employment benefits boosts.

And earlier this week in New Hampshire, Gov. Chris Sununu, a Republican, said his state was ending the $300 benefit and introducing a bonus of $500 to $1,000 for unemployed people who find steady work.

"We have plenty of jobs and we want folks to get back out there," Sununu said Tuesday.

The lure of employment benefits is just one factor in what's keeping some Americans at home, rather than at work.

Child care issues and the pandemic's ongoing threat, especially for workers who'd come in close contact with a high number of customers, further complicate the jobs picture.

"All those things might make people, especially in low-paid positions, reluctant to take a job and perhaps reduce their family's capacity to pay for its bills," said Gary Burtless, an economist and senior fellow at the Brookings Institution.

"Why should they make financial sacrifices on behalf of an industry which historically has not paid them very good wages and not offered them very good benefits, and so on?"



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