MONTGOMERY, Ala.—Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey announced Monday that Alabama will be the latest U.S. state to halt pandemic-related unemployment boosts, including the additional $300 benefit from the federal government.
Ivey cites an increase in job postings and complaints from businesses that they are unable to hire workers. She says she believes the increased unemployment assistance intended to bring emergency relief during the pandemic is now contributing to a labor shortage.
That view is echoed by conservative groups but disputed by some advocates for low-income families.
“As Alabama’s economy continues its recovery, we are hearing from more and more business owners and employers that it is increasingly difficult to find workers to fill available jobs, even though job openings are abundant,” Ivey said in a statement.
Ivey says Alabama will end its participation in all federally funded pandemic unemployment compensation programs effective June 19. That includes the additional $300 weekly payment to recipients of unemployment compensation and benefits to gig and part-time workers who would not usually qualify.