OLYMPIA, Wash. — Washington will apply to join a federal coronavirus program providing an additional $300 a week in unemployment benefits. The Employment Security Department said in a news release Thursday that it will apply for the assistance through the Federal Emergency Management Administration no later than Friday.
The program came about through an executive order by President Donald Trump after a federally funded $600 boost to weekly state unemployment benefits ended at the end of July. To date, more than two dozen states have decided to take the funding.
The program cuts the weekly benefit to $300 or $400 a week, depending on which plan governors choose. States are required to chip in $100 per claimant to be able to send out the higher amount, something few — including Washington — have agreed to do. So far, most states that have said they are taking Trump up on his offer have chosen the $300 version. Some have not decided which plan to take.