States Exhausting Unemployment Funding
One of the central flaws of safety net programs is that they become most necessary during recessions when states are least able to afford the influx of beneficiaries. Today, the National Employment Law Project, an advocacy group, reveals the extent of the problem as it pertains to jobless benefits, reporting that 33 states have fully exhausted their unemployment benefit funds.
Tops (bottoms?) on the list are California, which is down $8.4 billion; Michigan ($3.8 billion); New York ($3.0 billion); Pennsylvania ($2.8 billion); and Ohio ($2.2 billion).
As of March 31, states have borrowed nearly $39 billion from the federal government to plug the hole.
Andrew Stettner, NELP’s deputy director said that the crisis has resulted from more than just the recession alone.
“While the recession has certainly made things worse, this funding crisis has been developing for years,” he said in a statement. “Decades of poor financing policies at the state and federal level have helped dig the hole we’re in today.”