CCC.THISJUSTIN

March 9, 2018

 

 

 

 

 

Alaska: According to a recent report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Alaska’s unemployment rate in 2017 was the highest for a state in the U.S. While the U.S. unemployment rate increased in 12 states and D.C., Alaska’s annual average unemployment rate was 7.2%, significantly above the U.S. annual average unemployment rate of 4.4%.

Moreover, Alaska reported the lowest employment-population ratio in its series at 61.6%, which is significantly higher than the U.S. ratio of 60.1%. What’s more, Alaska’s job losses in 2017 for December were higher for some sectors compared to in November 2017. The manufacturing sector in particular reported the major job losses; its total jobs decreased from 10,200 jobs in November 2017 to 9,100 Jobs in December.

California: Job growth in California was more robust than expected in 2017 and continued on a strong note in January, adding 35,500 jobs as the unemployment rate fell to a record low of 4.4%, according to data released Wednesday by the state’s Employment Development Department.

California Employment Development Department Spokeswoman Loree Levy said they moved the deadline back to March 19th from February 20th. Workers, business owners and self-employed individuals who lost their jobs or had their work hours reduced as a result of the wildfires, floods and mudslides in December and January can apply. Applicants can receive up to 450-dollars-per-week for a maximum of 30 weeks. If an applicant doesn’t qualify for regular state unemployment benefits, EDD officials will process their claim for federal disaster unemployment benefits.

Delaware: State officials say there was no change in January in Delaware’s unemployment rate, which remains above the national average of 4.4%. A report released Tuesday shows the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate at 4.5 percent for January unchanged from December.

Florida: The Federal Emergency Management Agency and Florida State Emergency Response Team issued a report Tuesday that outlines work publicly and privately to recover from Hurricane Irma, which made landfall in Florida on Sept. 10, 2017. In terms of unemployment, nearly $7.1 million in disaster unemployment assistance has helped workers whose employment was affected by the hurricane.

Kentucky: Kentucky’s annual unemployment rate dropped to 4.9 percent in 2017 from 5.1 percent in 2016, while nonfarm employment gained 11,300 jobs, according to the Kentucky Center for Education and Workforce Statistics (KCEWS), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. It was the lowest annual jobless rate for the state since 2000 when the rate was 4.2 percent.

House Bill 252 would decrease the number of weeks a laid-off worker could receive benefits down to just 14 weeks in certain conditions. HB 252’s sponsors suggest that this change is needed because Kentucky offers too much in benefits, but it does not, on average, provide a disproportionate weekly benefit compared to our border states.

In 2016, the most recent year for which data are available, Kentucky paid an average weekly benefit of $320.53; Illinois: $362.44, Indiana: $273.92, Missouri: $253.45, Ohio: $354.32, Tennessee: $234.34, Virginia: $307.16 and West Virginia: $310.23. The amount of Kentucky’s average weekly benefit is only 6 percent higher than the average for the eight-state region, and is still below the national average of $351.78.

Bill sponsors claim we need to “incentivize” people to get off unemployment quicker. CCC is following the legislation and will keep you informed of it’s status.

Maine:  Maine is looking to fix their recently released unemployment filing system. Many claimants are left not able to file for weekly benefits.  The system was the first released of the four states using the ReEmployUSA system was spearheaded by Mississippi. ReEmployUSA is a cloud-based filing system that Maine is a part of, along with Rhode Island and Connecticut. Maine’s program is called ReEmployME, while Mississippi’s is AccessMS. Connecticut and Rhode Island have not rolled out their versions yet.

Nevada: The State of Nevada added 1,300 jobs over the month in January, according to the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation. It adds that Nevada’s unemployment rate remained unchanged since August of last year, at 4.9%. It’s the 66th straight month where Nevada’s employment rate is higher than the U.S. as a whole.

Vermont: The Vermont Department of Labor announced Friday, March 2, 2018, three potential changes to the Unemployment Insurance (Ul) program, that will ultimately reduce tax rates for employers beginning July I, 20.18. These anticipated changes will also reduce the taxable wage base amount that employers currently pay on unemployment taxes by $2,000, beginning January I, 2019, and on the benefits side, claimants are expected to see an increase in the maximum benefit amount effective July 1, 2018.

Nearly 22,600 employers remit state unemployment taxes to the Vermont Department of Labor on an annual basis. These taxes are deposited into the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund and are used for the payment, if unemployment insurance benefits to eligible claimants. The unemployment trust fund is “forward-funded,” meaning tax schedules are designed to raise more funds during periods of economic growth to ensure that there is adequate funding during economic recessions. The Department moved to Tax Rate Schedule IV (4) in July of 2017, which triggered a reduction in unemployment insurnnce tax rates for employers starting July I, 2017. These new changes will be triggered by the anticipated move from Tax Rate Schedule IV (4) to Tax Rate Schedule III (3) in July of 2018.

lndividual employers’ reduced taxable wage rates will vary according to their experience rating; however, the rate reduction anticipated in July of 20l8 will reduce the highest UI tax rate from 7.7 % to 6.5%. The lowest UI tax rate will see a reducrion from 1.1% to 0.8%. Additionally, it is anticipated that on July I, 2018, the maximum weekly unemployment benefit will be indexed upwards to 57% of the average weekly wage. The current maximum weekly benefit amount of $466 is expected to increase to $513.  The change in the maximum weekly benefit amount is directly tied to the Tax Rate Schedule.

CCC will continue to keep you informed as more information is released.

If you have questions regarding any of the workforce solutions CCC provides please contact us at 800.207.6926 or contact@corporatecostcontrol.com..

 

 

 


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