SC applies for federal grant for additional $300 a week in unemployment benefits

State News

FILE (AP Photo/Sean Rayford, File)

COLUMBIA, SC (WSPA) – South Carolina has applied for FEMA’s Lost Wages Assistance program which would provide an extra $300 in unemployment benefits on top of the state’s weekly benefit.

The program was created by President Donald Trump after the expiration of the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program, which was a part of the CARES Act.

Governor Henry McMaster authorized the South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce to apply for the federal aid in a letter Wednesday.

“We’ve chosen to participate in this program in a way that will provide additional unemployment relief from the federal government while maintaining our strong record of fiscal responsibility and protecting the interests of South Carolinians,” said Governor Henry McMaster.

“Deciding whether or not it was in the state’s best interest to apply for these funds was not an easy decision,” said DEW Executive Director Dan Ellzey. “Taking the time to weigh the options in order to best mitigate the state’s risk and ensure it wouldn’t cost South Carolina taxpayers was the right thing for the governor and legislators to do.”

Once implemented, the LWA payments would be retroactive to August 1. Officials said the grant from FEMA has a funding cap and that payments will end if funds run out.

All payments will end by December 26, 2020 if funding has not run out.

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