FRANKFORT, Ky. (WDKY) – Governor Beshear held the first of what he is calling weekly “Team Kentucky Updates” Thursday afternoon:
The governor updated Kentuckians on a variety of topics, including economic development, infrastructure and vaccine incentives.
One of the most anticipated topics the governor addressed was employment incentives and the extra $300 a week in unemployment benefits.
Some Kentucky employers and some economic leaders are asking for that federal unemployment benefit to end. Some believe the government is making it too easy to not get a job because.
The federal unemployment benefits are expected to end in September, but some are saying it can’t wait until then and people need more incentive to go back to work.
Last week, the governor told us there are a lot of benefits to the state’s economy for keeping that $300 flowing.
“These benefits, right now, put about $34 million a week into Kentucky’s economy,” Gov. Beshear said during his final COVID-19 briefing last week. “The number one place they’re spent are grocery stores. But they’re also spent at restaurants and retail, two areas that have been hit so hard in this pandemic. So, if we’re not smart about our approach, if we don’t thread the needle over the coming months, we’re gonna see the same businesses that may have been hurt the most, take another hit, and that’s not right.”
During Thursday’s update, Gov. Beshear said major issues, including child care, are behind keeping the extra $300 weekly unemployment benefit. Though he admits it is a “complicated” issue.
Several states, including Tennessee and Arizona, have either stopped or plan to stop the federal unemployment benefits earlier than September.
The governor also announced Thursday that the Kentucky Capitol will open on July 1.