The Montana Department of labor and Industry reminds Montana workers that one part of the federal pandemic assistance program is coming to an end later this month.

Public Information Director Lauren Lewis has details.

“We’re reminding Montanans that the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation Program is scheduled to end the week of July 25th,” said Lewis. “That was established through the passage of the federal CARES Act. This temporary program provided an extra $600 per week to anyone receiving unemployment benefits. That’s under the regular Unemployment Insurance or the Pandemic Enhanced Unemployment Insurance Program.”

Lewis provided the total amount of money paid out to Montanans during the Federal Pandemic Compensation Program.

“There have been over $700 million dollars in unemployment insurance benefits paid out since the beginning of the pandemic,” she said. “Roughly two-thirds of that amount we can attribute to that extra $600 weekly payment.”

Lewis said the Montana Department of Labor and Industry encompasses a large number of agencies and services.

“We have a vast array of services including unemployment insurance,” she said. “We also work on workforce development; we have a research and analysis bureau that is diligently working on labor market information. We have an employment relations department that works on a variety of things including safety and health.”

'Other provisions of the CARES Act do not expire until December 26, 2020. This includes Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), which provides an extra 13 weeks of benefits to persons who exhaust traditional benefits, and Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), which provides up to 46 weeks of benefits to those who are self-employed and some others who have not traditionally qualified for state benefits. Also, Montana is offering an additional 13 weeks of Extended Benefits for eligible individuals who have exhausted both their regular UI benefits and PEUC benefits.'

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