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Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez
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News Release

ETA News Release: [08/10/2010]
Contact Name: Lina Garcia or Mike Trupo
Phone Number: (202) 693-4661 or x3414
Release Number: 10-1110-ATL

US Labor Department announces release of $97.5 million in unemployment insurance modernization incentive funds to South Carolina

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Labor will release $97,459,490 in unemployment insurance modernization incentive funds to the state of South Carolina. South Carolina qualified for its full share of funding available through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act by enacting a variety of provisions that allow more workers who lose jobs through no fault of their own to receive unemployment compensation. This group includes recent entrants to the workforce, part-time workers, and those who become unemployed due to compelling family reasons.

"By updating state unemployment insurance laws, South Carolina has acknowledged the needs of so many workers who would otherwise have gone without assistance," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "The job market remains challenging, and these workers need and deserve our support as they strive to provide for their families and find new jobs."

The South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce will use funds to pay unemployment benefits or, if appropriated by the legislature, to administer the state unemployment insurance program.

"At a time when South Carolinians most need it, the state's updated unemployment system and the federal government's $97.5 million in incentive payments have expanded the safety net to help more families make ends meet as they continue looking for jobs," said House of Representatives Majority Whip Rep. Jim Clyburn, who represents South Carolina's 6th District. "Unemployment benefits have an immediate simulative effect on the economy and positive impacts on working families who have lost jobs through no fault of their own."

"For thousands of South Carolinians who have been out of work for weeks on end, this $97.5 million in extended benefits is a lifeline," said Rep. John Spratt, who represents South Carolina's 5th District. "And because these benefits tend to be spent quickly, they give the economy a much needed boost."

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. South Carolina'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.