Ohio ending extra unemployment benefits program in June, DeWine says

Ohio ending extra unemployment benefits program in June, DeWine says
Updated: May. 13, 2021 at 1:49 PM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ohio (FOX19) - Ohio will stop its participation in the $300 Federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program on June 26, Gov. Mike DeWine announced Thursday.

The governor said the assistance was always meant to be temporary.

“When the program was put in place, it was a lifeline for many Americans at a time when the only weapon we had in fighting the virus was through social distancing, masking, and sanitization,” said Gov. DeWine. “This is no longer the case as we now have an abundant supply of vaccines.”

This news might be a relief to leaders at Ohio’s unemployment office who needed to bring in the private sector leaders to help stop widespread fraud in the PUA program.

Fraud has plagued Ohio’s unemployment office during the pandemic, but it has gotten better.

FOX19 NOW Investigates revealed that there were roughly 44,000 fraudulent claims filed to the traditional unemployment program the week of February 11. The week of March 25 the number dropped to 7,900 fraudulent claims filed.

That number dropped to 950 fraudulent claims filed in the week of April 19.

The federal program is separate from the state’s unemployment insurance program, which will continue on as normal.

On Wednesday, the governor announced Ohio is giving out five separate million-dollar prizes to vaccinated adults in the state.

In the same address, he said Ohio’s health orders will be removed effective June 2.

Gov. DeWine gives update after announcing vaccine lottery, health order end date

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