Missourians who have exhausted their unemployment insurance while they continue to look for work have begun receiving their first payments of extended benefits under House Bill 1075, a bill signed into law last Friday (June 12) by Gov. Jay Nixon. The bill will inject up to $65 million of federal Recovery Act funds in Missouri's economy by extending the period for Missourians to receive unemployment benefits.
The Department of Labor and Industrial Relations (DOLIR) on Tuesday (June 16) made payments totaling $651,879 to 938 Missourians. DOLIR uses direct deposit or debit card account to get the extended benefits to the eligible claimants. That amount represents the first day of claims after the department began receiving claims Monday morning. The department has sent letters to more than 11,500 potentially eligible claimants.
"The effect of this bill to help Missouri families has been almost immediate," Gov. Nixon said. "I have directed DOLIR staff to continue to process these claims in an expedient manner. Even as we work to turn this economy around and put Missourians back to work, this will be a boost for those families with a breadwinner who is looking for a job and whose unemployment benefits are used up."
House Bill 1075 passed with bipartisan support in both chambers of the Missouri General Assembly. The Senate passed the bill by a vote of 30-to-4. The House adopted the bill 148-to-9.
Individuals receiving extended benefits will qualify for the additional $25 weekly Federal Assistance Compensation (FAC) benefit provided through the Recovery Act and approved by Gov. Nixon. More than $51.8 million has been infused into Missouri's economy through these payments since Feb. 19, when Gov. Nixon signed an agreement for funding of these benefits with the U.S Department of Labor.