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Louisiana Officials Reveal Unemployment Fund Can Only Last 16 Weeks At Current Rate Of Spending

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Things are beginning to look dire for the state of Louisiana economically speaking as the coronavirus and the subsequent shutdowns designed to help slow the spread of the disease ravage the state’s unemployment fund, which officials are now saying will only last a total of 16 weeks at the current rate of spending.

Louisiana’s unemployment fund has about $840 million in it, so the fact they are this close to being completely depleted should tell you just how bad the economy is doing right now without things being opened and production increased.

While officials released this information, they also stated that things are in flux and could change at any moment, especially if there is an infusion of federal dollars into the fund.

Here’s more from The Washington Examiner:

The Louisiana Workforce Commission paid 103,000 people $153 million in unemployment benefits last year, LWC Executive Director Ava Dejoie said. Since March 21, the LWC has paid 400,000 people about $1.4 billion, including $323 million in state dollars, she said.

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The federal government has sent money to states to enhance unemployment benefits in hopes of stimulating the economy and providing pandemic-related assistance to workers who might not otherwise be eligible. But the state’s fund still covers standard unemployment benefits to workers whose employers have paid into the system.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, 40,268 Louisiana residents filed new unemployment claims last week, compared to 50,941 the previous week. In a typical week, the number is less than 2,000. About 325,000 people currently are receiving benefits.

Gov. John Bel Edwards has allowed employers to put off paying unemployment insurance taxes, but a lot of company owners have been doing it anyway. Collection of funds is only down roughly 9 percent compared to what was taken in last year. We’ll have to wait and see if that trend will continue into the second and third quarter this year, as that number will be drastically impacted by whether or not folks are able to get back to work or not.

This is why folks are pressing so hard to reopen state economies. Our current trajectory is unsustainable. Anyone with even a rudimentary understanding of economics knows this is true. It’s time to start getting back to work and taking whatever precautions we can in the mean time.

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