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Governor: Louisiana's unemployed could get additional $300 in federal benefits

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BATON ROUGE - Governor John Bel Edwards announced that Louisiana is pursuing an option for residents eligible for unemployment to get an additional $300 each week in federal support.

Edwards said during his coronavirus briefing Thursday that unemployed will be eligible for an additional $300 under an executive order from President Donald Trump. The benefits will be in addition to the benefits recipients are already receiving from the state.

“Last night, we received helpful guidance from the federal government that we believe allows us to use the total amount of money the state is paying in unemployment funds as cost share to draw down the additional $300 per qualified applicant. While all of the details are not yet available, we are cautiously optimistic that we will be able to provide an additional $1,200 a month to qualified people on unemployment,” Gov. Edwards said in a statement. “This is a temporary solution, as funds are limited, and I am still calling on Congress to act. However, as soon as these funds are available to us, we will move quickly to pay them out.”

Though Trump's order mandates that states receiving the federal disaster relief payments must also match with an additional $100 payment. Louisiana will opt to count existing unemployment benefits toward that amount, an option provided by the federal government.

The governor said once the state gets the federal assistance, the benefits will be applied retroactively back to Aug. 1. It's still unclear exactly when the payments will be made available.


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