$300 Weekly Federal Boost to Minnesota Unemployment Benefits Likely Over


The $300 a week federal boost to unemployment benefits for Minnesotans who were laid off due to the COVID-19 pandemic is likely over after six weeks, state economic officials say.

During a press conference Thursday, Economic Commissioner Steve Grove said the last payout for the extra boost in unemployment benefits was the first week of September.

“We believe it’s done,” Grove told reporters.

Minnesota started making the payments on Sept. 4 immediately after the federal government sent the funding to the state’s Department of Employment and Economic Development. The payments were backdated starting in late July.

The $300 weekly payments were on top of the state’s regular benefits, which max out at $740 a week.

In August, the most recent month available, 231,599 Minnesotans were unemployed—a jobless rate of 7.4%. The jobless rate was 2.9% earlier this year before the coronavirus pandemic plunged the U.S. economy into recession.

Minnesota’s state unemployment benefits max out at 26 weeks, but a provision in state law protects people from the cutoff while the jobless rate is above 6.6%, Grove says.

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