Washington state approved for federal $300 jobless aid boost

Washington was approved Monday for a federal coronavirus grant that will allow for an additional $300 in unemployment benefits on top of the state’s regular unemployment benefit for a limited period of time.

“FEMA will work with Washington Gov. Jay Inslee to implement a system to make this funding available to Washington residents,” the federal agency said in a news release.

A spokeswoman for the Employment Security Department said the state agency is still working on how long it will take for those payments to be reflected in people’s accounts.

Payments will be retroactive to Aug. 1. Not everyone who has filed a claim will be eligible for the extra funding, and ESD has said that the benefit is currently time-limited to those filing claims over a three-week period, between July 26 and Aug. 15.

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In order to qualify for the weekly bonus, people must certify that they are unemployed or partially unemployed due to COVID-19.

The program came about through an executive order by President Donald Trump after a federally funded $600 boost to weekly state unemployment benefits ended at the end of July.

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