The U.S. Department of Labor has certified for release $838,680,283 in unemployment insurance modernization incentive funds to the state of California. California qualified for its full share of the funds available under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act by including in its law provisions that assist recent entrants to the workforce, part-time workers and workers who become unemployed because of compelling family reasons.
"The federal government made these funds available as an incentive for states to strengthen their safety net as our economy continues to recover," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "I am pleased that California's leaders took the necessary steps to provide unemployment insurance to an expanded group of deserving workers. These funds will help people continue to pay housing expenses, buy groceries and take care of their families while they look for full-time employment."
The California Labor and Workforce Development Agency can use the funds to pay unemployment benefits or, if appropriated by the legislature, for administering its unemployment insurance program or delivering employment services.
"These funds will help 26,000 unemployed Californians who need additional support as the state's economy starts to recover," said Gov. Edmund G. Brown Jr. "Thanks to the leadership of the president and Secretary Solis, and the actions of our own state legislature, California is better equipped to serve displaced workers and is on better footing to pay down our unemployment insurance fund debt."
The Recovery Act made a total of $7 billion available in UI modernization incentive payments to states that include certain eligibility provisions in their UI programs. Each state can qualify for a share of those funds by showing that its law includes those provisions. With California's UI modernization, more than half of those funds, or approximately $4.2 billion, have been released to eligible states and territories. California's approved application will be posted at the department's Employment and Training Administration website at http://www.doleta.gov/recovery/. Other approved applications can also be found on this site.