Alabama, Tennessee Announces End of Participation in All Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation Programs
Alabama News Release
MONTGOMERY — Governor Kay Ivey announced today that Alabama will end its participation in all federally funded pandemic unemployment compensation programs effective June 19, 2021 including:
- Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), which provides for an additional $300 weekly payment to recipients of unemployment compensation.
- Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), which provides benefits for those who would not usually qualify, such as the self-employed, gig workers, and part-time workers,
- Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), which provides for an extension of benefits once regular benefits have been exhausted, and
- Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation (MEUC), which provides an additional $100 benefit to certain people with mixed earnings.
Any weeks filed prior to and up to June 19 and are eligible under any of the federal program requirements will continue to be processed under these programs.
“As Alabama’s economy continues its recovery, we are hearing from more and more business owners and employers that it is increasingly difficult to find workers to fill available jobs, even though job openings are abundant,” said Governor Ivey. “Among other factors, increased unemployment assistance, which was meant to be a short-term relief program during emergency related shutdowns, is now contributing to a labor shortage that is compromising the continuation of our economic recovery.”
“Alabama has an unemployment rate of 3.8%, the lowest in the Southeast, and significantly lower than the national unemployment rate. Our Department of Labor is reporting that there are more available jobs now than prior to the pandemic. Jobs are out there,” continued Governor Ivey. “We have announced the end date of our state of emergency, there are no industry shutdowns, and daycares are operating with no restrictions. Vaccinations are available for all adults. Alabama is giving the federal government our 30-day notice that it’s time to get back to work.”
ADOL has reinstated the work search requirement for all claimants, which was temporarily waived during the height of the pandemic. This requires all claimants to actively search for work to remain eligible for unemployment benefits.
“We have more posted job ads now than we did in either February or March 2020,” said Alabama Department of Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington. “Ads for workers in the leisure and hospitality industry are up by 73%. Overall, ads are up by nearly 40%. There are plenty of opportunities available in multiple industries in Alabama.”
Free job services are available to all Alabamians through the Alabama Career Center System, which operates 53 centers throughout the state. Services include résumé preparation, interviewing skills, job search and application assistance, vocational and educational training programs, and apprenticeship and on-the-job training programs. A listing of Career Centers can be found HERE.
Tennessee News Release
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Today, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee announced the end of all federally funded pandemic unemployment compensation programs in Tennessee, effective July 3.
“We will no longer participate in federal pandemic unemployment programs because Tennesseans have access to more than 250,000 jobs in our state,” said Gov. Lee. “Families, businesses and our economy thrive when we focus on meaningful employment and move on from short-term, federal fixes.”
Gov. Lee’s letter to the U.S. Department of Labor can be viewed here.
Federal pandemic unemployment programs set to end on July 3 include the following:
- Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), which provides for an additional $300 weekly payment to recipients of unemployment compensation
- Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), which provides benefits for those who would not usually qualify, such as the self-employed, gig workers and part-time workers
- Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), which provides for an extension of benefits once regular benefits have been exhausted
- Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation (MEUC), which provides an additional $100 benefit to certain people with mixed earnings
Unemployment claimants in Tennessee have been required to complete three weekly job searches in order to remain eligible for benefits since Oct. 4, 2020.
Any weeks filed before July 3 that are eligible under federal program requirements will continue to be processed.
The Tennessee Workforce Development System stands ready to help Tennesseans return to the workforce. Career specialists are available to help job seekers match with new employment opportunities at more than 80 American Job Centers across the state. They can work to identify possible training programs that can help an individual change their career pathway or enter an apprenticeship program so they can earn a competitive wage, while the learn a new trade.
The Tennessee Virtual American Job Center, www.TNVirtualAJC.com allows Tennesseans to research different programs that can help remove barriers to employment so they can more easily reenter Tennessee’s workforce.
As federal pandemic unemployment compensation ends in Tennessee, the state encourages claimants to search for work at www.Jobs4TN.gov, which currently has over 250,000 active job postings of all skill levels.