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News Release

ETA News Release: [06/02/2009]
Contact Name: Jennifer Kaplan
Phone Number: (202) 693-5052
Release Number: 09-0610-CHI

U.S. Labor Department announces release of $88.2 million in unemployment insurance modernization incentive funds to Ohio

PERRYSBURG, Ohio — While in Perrysburg with Gov. Ted Strickland today, Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis announced that the U.S. Department of Labor has certified for release $88,169,529 in unemployment insurance (UI) modernization incentive funds for the state of Ohio. The state qualified for the funds available under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Recovery Act) by allowing workers to use their more recent earnings to qualify for benefits. Ohio's approved application will be posted at the department's Employment and Training Administration Web site at http://www.doleta.gov/recovery.

"Ohio recognized the importance of having its UI program better meet the needs of the 21st century workforce long before the Recovery Act," said Secretary Solis. "Ohio uses recent wages when determining eligibility for benefits, which enables unemployed workers who are relatively new entrants to the workforce to receive the assistance they need and deserve."

The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services can use the funds to pay unemployment benefits or, if appropriated by the legislature, for administering its unemployment insurance program or delivering employment services.

"Providing additional funding for laid off workers and their families during this recession is not only the right thing to do — it is also the right way to stimulate our local economies," said Gov. Strickland. "We are grateful that President Obama and Ohio's Congressional leaders are providing support for struggling Ohioans and helping to stabilize the economy."

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. To date, the Labor Department has certified 12 other states' applications for some or all of their shares.