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South Dakota to End Federal Pandemic Unemployment Benefits

Official headshot of Gov. Kristi Noem, SD

PIERRE, SD (KTIV) - Today, Governor Kristi Noem and the South Dakota Department of Labor and Regulation announced South Dakota will end its participation in three federal government unemployment assistance programs.

“Businesses across the state continue to say they would grow and expand, if it wasn’t for the lack of workers. Help wanted signs line our streets. South Dakota is, and has been, ‘Open for Business.’ Ending these programs is a necessary step towards recovery, growth, and getting people back to work.” said state Labor and Regulation Secretary Marcia Hultman.

According to a news release, South Dakota was the only state that did not apply for the federal Lost Wages Assistance supplement last fall. Additionally, South Dakota did not opt into the federal Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation program in December 2020.

South Dakota elected to participate in three unemployment-related programs in connection with the CARES Act and Continued Assistance to Unemployed Workers Act of 2020.

South Dakota has decided to no longer participate in the federal Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program, which helped people who had used the traditional 26 weeks of unemployment compensation from the state.

According to the news release, the state will no longer issue the supplemental $300 weekly payments under the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program.

South Dakota will also no longer participate in the federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program. That program provides benefits to the self-employed, the underemployed, independent contractors, and individuals who have been unable to work due to health or COVID-19-related reasons.

The benefits will end June 26 2021 for all three programs. The state will continue to pay regular State claims.

“DLR’s online jobs database SDWORKS has averaged over 23,000 job openings daily. Our Job Service offices are open and ready to help and support those returning to the workforce, in need of additional skills or training, or who need an extra hand in overcoming barriers,” said Secretary Hultman.

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Brandon Martin

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