Tag Archives: CARES Act

Idaho’s Standard Unemployment Insurance Tax Rate Drops Approximately 18% for 2021

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: Dec.18 2020
Media Contacts: Georgia Smith, Georgia.Smith@labor.idaho.gov or Darlene Carnopis, Darlene.Carnopis@labor.idaho.gov

Idaho employers will see a roughly 18 percent decrease in unemployment insurance tax rates for 2021.

The state’s new employer rate remains at 1.0 percent – the lowest rate allowed by federal conformity requirements.

“Thanks to Governor Little approving a $200 million transfer of CARES Act funding to keep the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund whole, most Idaho businesses will see a decrease in their tax rate for 2021,” said Jani Revier, Idaho Department of Labor director. “This move by the governor allows Idaho to keep UI tax rates low in the coming year and will help business owners as they navigate through these difficult times,” Revier said.

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FAQs for Unemployment Claimants about the End of the CARES Act Programs

Question: I hear Congress approved extending unemployment benefits and other stimulus programs.

Answer: Congress has passed legislation to extend the CARES Act programs that affect unemployment benefits. Now that it has been signed by President Trump, states will be informed about how to implement the program. Until then, we have no additional details and cannot answer your phone calls regarding the extension. We will post any updates on our FAQs and website as they become available. Please continue to submit your weekly reports.

Q: I hear that the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program is ending.

A: You are correct, unemployment insurance programs and extensions funded by the federal CARES Act expired Dec. 26, 2020, including Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC).

Q: How do I know if I am receiving unemployment insurance funded by the Federal CARES Act?

A: PEUC, or extended benefits program, adds 13 weeks to exhausted unemployment benefits. If you applied for extended benefits on the Claimant Portal, you’ll see confirmation that your extended benefits application was approved on the Claimant Portal home page under Extended Benefits.

PUA is for self-employed, low wage earners or workers with denied issues who were unemployed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Individuals who are primarily self-employed uploaded tax information to the Claimant Portal to determine monetary eligibility.

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Federal CARES Act Unemployment Insurance Programs End Dec. 26

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: Dec. 9, 2020
Media Contacts: Georgia Smith, Georgia.Smith@labor.idaho.gov or Darlene Carnopis, Darlene.Carnopis@labor.idaho.gov

The Idaho Department of Labor reminds claimants that federal CARES Act unemployment insurance programs expire Dec. 26.

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), unemployment for self-employed, low wage earners and workers with denied issues, and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), an extension that adds weeks to exhausted unemployment benefits, are the two programs set to expire.

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Labor Begins Making Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Payments

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: May 11, 2020
Information Contact: Georgia Smith, (208) 332-3570 ext. 2102

The Idaho Department of Labor is now making payments for the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program, which provides benefits to individuals who are unemployed because of COVID-19 and are not eligible for regular benefits.

Payments will be made to workers who are not monetarily eligible for regular benefits and have no pending issues on their claim.

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Labor Ready to Accept Applications for Extended Unemployment Insurance Benefits

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: April 30, 2020
Information Contact: Georgia Smith, (208) 332-3570 ext. 2102

Idahoans who are out of work and have exhausted regular unemployment insurance benefits can now apply for extended benefits under the CARES Act online at labor.idaho.gov/claimantportal.

Changes made by the Idaho Department of Labor to its system will add an additional 13 weeks to an eligible claimant’s unemployment benefit year. To qualify, a claimant must have a claim with a benefit year ending date after July 1, 2019.

The payments are retroactive to March 29 or the first week after an individual exhausts benefits, whichever is later.

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Labor Begins Making Payments for Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: April 24, 2020
Information Contact: Georgia Smith, (208) 332-3570 ext. 2102

The Idaho Department of Labor has begun making more than $63 million in payments for the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program, which provides temporary emergency funds of $600 per week for claimants.

It will take approximately three business days for claimants to see the funds in their bank accounts or debit cards once it has been issued. The payments are retroactive to March 29 or the first week the individual received benefits, whichever is later. The payment will be delivered in one lump sum.

Claimants do not need to do anything extra to receive the $600 weekly, but they should continue to file weekly claims. Claimants with pending issues preventing payment will not receive the additional funds until the issues are resolved and they are allowed benefits. There is no need to call the department as claimants can check the Claimant Portal to confirm payment.

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Labor Department Releases Timeline for Implementing CARES Act Programs

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: April 14, 2020
Information Contact: Georgia Smith, (208) 332-3570 ext. 2102

Idahoans currently receiving unemployment insurance benefits could start seeing the additional $600 federal benefit authorized by Congress under the CARES Act by the end of April.

“We’re making progress on a huge backlog of claims and sending payments out to the people of Idaho,” said Idaho Department of Labor Director Jani Revier. “We still have a lot to do to make sure the funds are administered correctly, but we are making progress.”

The department received as many initial claims for benefits in three weeks – 77,430 – than it received during all of 2019, creating a tremendous backlog of work. However, benefit payments are flowing. The agency paid out $17.95 million in benefits to Idahoans whose jobs are impacted by COVID-19 from March 23 to April 10.

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New Federal Policies and Programs to Help Shore Up COVID-19 Economy

CARES Act Summary – COVID-19 Federal Rescue Bill
Federal Monetary Policy Response to COVID-19

The Federal Reserve announced a variety of new lending initiatives aimed at injecting $2.3 trillion of financing for businesses as well as state and local governments. The new stimulus will include lending to governments as well as increased purchases of corporate bonds, including high-yield or junk bonds. Source: Wall Street Journal

CARES Act – COVID-19 Federal Rescue Bill – Summary

Note: We are working with our partners at the U.S. Department of Labor to implement the programs in the CARES Act affecting Idaho Department of Labor customers as quickly as possible. This could take several weeks once USDOL issues the guidance to the states. Updates will be posted on Labor’s COVID-19 website,

Direct Rescue Checks to Households – All U.S. residents with adjusted gross incomes up to $75,000 — $150,000 for married couples — will receive $1,200 — or $2,400 for couples — in direct payments. Families get an additional $500 per child, and payments phase out above the $75,000 mark, disappearing altogether at $99,000.

Enhanced Unemployment Insurance (UI) Benefits – UI benefits expand in scope, duration and value. Claimants can get an extra $600 per week for up to four months. Gig economy workers are also now eligible for benefits, affecting a multidimensional expansion of unemployment benefits — more people, bigger payments, longer duration.

$500 Billion in Flexible Rescue Loans – The Treasury has discretion to allocate up to $500 in loans to failing industries, or local and state governments. An accountability committee will be set up to oversee the program, though Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin has broad power to initiate lending. Continue reading