Key worker bonus payments vary widely from state to state.Donald Trump Florida Chicago Employee Teacher

Missouri prison guards received an additional $ 250 per salary to stay healthy during a coronavirus pandemic. teacher To Georgia I received a $ 1,000 bonus.And in Vermont Nurses, janitor, retail workers, and many others earned as much as $ 2,000.

Over the past year, about one-third of US states have used federal COVID-19 relief supplies to reward workers who are considered essential who have faithfully reported their work during a pandemic. However, according to the Associated Press review, who qualified for these bonuses and how much they received was very different. Some have been paid thousands of dollars, while others doing similar work have not received anything.

As society resumes, the momentum to provide pandemic hazard pay appears to be diminishing — the federal government provides retroactive pay under the $ 350 billion aid package enacted by the president. I expanded my ability Joe Biden March.

So far, very few states have promised to pay workers extra with money from the US Rescue Program.

Florida gives teachers and first responders a $ 1,000 bonus. Minnesota plans to distribute a $ 250 million bonus to key workers, but the Special Committee will not decide who will qualify until later this year.

Last week, Hawaii Governor David Ige refused to budget for a $ 2,200 bonus to teachers. The Democratic governor said lawmakers do not have the authority to teach state education how to use federal funds.

Some states are reluctant to enact bonus programs.

Oregon’s proposal to use federal pandemic aid to provide key workers with a bonus of up to $ 2,000 in July, despite union lobbying activities involving thousands of emails and calls to hundreds of lawmakers. I couldn’t get into the budget that came into effect on the 1st. The proposal would have been aimed at workers in a variety of areas, including education, medical care, public security, and transportation.

“I don’t think anyone objected to it,” said Melissa Unger, Executive Director of the United Nations Local 503 Service Employees. But “no one prioritized it.”

The state needs to decide how to use the latest federal aid by the end of 2024, but as more parts of society resume, a realistic window for providing worker bonuses may close. Some supporters are concerned that it is not.

“Unfortunately, the more we delay it, the less it comes to the minds of voters and their policy makers,” said Molly Kinder, a nonprofit Brookings Institution fellow who is tracking the pandemic hazard pay policy. Told.

Premium Pay is one of several options offered to the state under Biden’s aid package. The state will also fill in budget holes, support businesses and homes affected by the recession, fund specific infrastructure projects, and pay for public health programs such as COVID-19 testing and vaccination. You can spend that money on.

Illinois legislators have used federal funding for dozens of budget initiatives that came into effect on July 1. From $ 75,000 for high school instruction and anti-violence programs to $ 200 million for hospitals. Even if Illinois had made pandemic payments in the past, nothing was assigned to additional pandemic payments.

Last year, Democratic Governor JB Pritzkar’s administration provided a temporary 12% wage increase to workers in nearly 24,000 states at risk of being infected with COVID-19. Most of the $ 62 million was funded by federal funds.

“Morale, it was important to my colleagues and me,” said Crosby Smith, a state home care provider for people with developmental disabilities near Chicago. .. We felt a kind of abandoned. “

Smith and his fiancé were among the many staff and residents of the Ludman Development Center, which was infected with the virus last year. He said hazard money helped pay by credit card and helped avoid additional debt when buying clothing and shoes.

Most states that provide COVID-19 Hazard Pay pay spent money from coronavirus aid, bailout and economic security legislation signed by the then president. Donald Trump While some states restricted payments to certain civil servants, others distributed money to a wide range of private workers who appeared to be doing important work.

According to state data provided to AP, Louisiana spent more than $ 38 million last year, offering more than $ 152,000 “frontline workers” a $ 250 payment, less than $ 50,000 a year. I got an income. Healthcare workers received the most money, followed by grocery workers and law enforcement officers. However, payments also went to gas station workers, childcare providers, janitor, bus drivers, and so on.

Democratic Governor of Pennsylvania Tom Wolf uses $ 50 million in federal aid to subsidize more than 600 companies for $ 3 per hour for employees with less than $ 20 per hour. Provided a positive boost. According to state data provided to AP, healthcare providers got most of the money, followed by the food industry. However, millions of dollars have been paid to cleaning companies and private security companies.

In contrast, South Dakota restricted the payment of risk to state workers, only while they were potentially exposed to COVID-19. According to state data provided to AP, one treatment assistant received an additional 40 cents, a pharmacist received $ 1.80, and a maintenance supervisor received $ 4.

In some states, the cost of hazard pay programs far exceeded initial expectations.

Missouri initially budgeted about $ 24 million in federal aid to provide state personnel working in close-knit facilities such as prisons, mental health facilities, and veterans’ nursing homes with an additional $ 250 per two-week salary. I put it in. This benefit was applied to people who had at least one COVID-19 case and had no unscheduled absences. Ultimately, it targeted far more people for a much longer period than policymakers expected at the time of the pandemic.

According to state data provided to AP, Missouri paid more than $ 73 million in hazard benefits to more than 18,000 employees, causing an additional $ 24 million in fringe costs such as pension payments and federal taxes. .. Payments end on June 30, and the state has no immediate plans to resume them.

“It was definitely worth it,” said Republican Missouri Governor Mike Parson. “Some people have done some incredible work in the state to maintain the course and stay on duty.”

The Vermont Hazard Pay program has also increased in cost. Last August, the state allocated $ 28 million in federal funding to pay up to $ 2,000 to health care workers who worked in the early stages of the pandemic. We then expanded the program to include retail and grocery workers, childcare providers, janitor, and garbage collectors, adding $ 22 million. When those funds were exhausted, the state added an additional $ 10 million to cover all eligible applicants.

According to data provided to AP, employees in the retail and grocery industry in Vermont received nearly one-third of the total amount, about the same as they went to the healthcare sector.

Vermont Treasury Regulator Mike Piesiak said demand was high, partly because Republican Governor Phil Scott encouraged large companies hesitating, such as Wal-Mart, to apply on behalf of employees. .. He said personal consumption surged around the time payments were distributed.

“The first goal was to thank these frontline workers, but it also brought great benefits in putting money into the economy,” said Piesiak.

Key worker bonus payments vary widely from state to state.Donald Trump Florida Chicago Employee Teacher

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