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NEW YORK, ,NY — Unemployed New Yorkers won’t have to wait longer than necessary to collect recently-expanded and extended jobless benefits.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday that $300 unemployment payments and a slate of other benefits included in a federal stimulus package will be available starting next week — the first date the law allows them to be paid.
“This pandemic has created an unprecedented economic crisis, and New Yorkers have waited in uncertainty for far too long,” he said in a statement. “I have repeatedly called on the federal government to do the right thing by renewing critical benefits to support millions of unemployed families through to the end of this pandemic – and now that Washington has finally acted, New York is immediately delivering those funds.”
The delays for unemployed New Yorkers were numerous. First, the Republican-led Senate dragged its feet on a second coronavirus stimulus package. Then, after a $900 billion bipartisan package passed both houses, President Donald Trump abruptly cast doubt on whether he’d sign it.
Cuomo claimed the state’s “proactive” preparations will allow New Yorkers to receive “without delay.”
Federal unemployment benefits will be extended for an additional 11 weeks through March 14. Officials said New Yorkers currently receiving benefits will automatically receive extended benefits.
Those whose unemployment benefit year ended should reapply online, officials said.
New Yorkers can now receive up to 57 weeks of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance with its extension from the week ending Jan. 3 through March 14. Additional eligibility documentation is required starting Jan. 31 and state Department of Labor workers will directly contact claimants.
Likewise, the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation benefit has been extended. New Yorkers can now receive up to 24 weeks — an increase from the 13 weeks originally slated in the spring — as the program extends through March 14. Those who exhausted the 26 weeks of state unemployment insurance should continue to certify as normal and will automatically receive up to 24 weeks of PEUC.
“Individuals who previously exhausted the original 13 weeks of PEUC and transitioned to the Extended Benefits program will begin receiving extended PEUC benefits after they exhaust their EB benefits,” a release states. “The Department of Labor will automatically handle these program transfers.”
The $300 Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation will resume the week ending Jan. 3 for 11 weeks. New Yorkers who receive any type of unemployment benefit will receive the additional $300 boost.
Trump eventually relented after his demand — first made by Democrats — for $2,000 direct payments to Americans gained traction. He signed the bill but the delay put the timing of unemployment payments in doubt.