DeWine: Ohio borrowing to meet cost of unemployment claims
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine said Tuesday the state is seeking authority to borrow $3.1 billion to cover unemployment benefits of state residents.
It last borrowed federal money for that purpose during the Great Recession, a loan it finished paying back just four years ago.
"The state has requested a line of credit of $3.1 billion from the U.S. Department of Labor," the governor said. "That total exceeds what we think we will have to pay out in benefits. We're asking for greater authority than we currently think we will need, so that we have it just in case we do need it."
DeWine said at a news briefing guidelines for "best practices" for worshipping are being placed on Ohio's coronavirus website.
Like West Virginia, Ohio has had virus outbreaks traced to churches-the latest at a church in the Springfield area, in the west central part of the state.
Meanwhile, West Virginia's unemployment rate fell to 12.9% last month, buoyed by business reopenings during the coronavirus pandemic.
The state's jobless dropped 2.1 percentage points in May as nonfarm employment rose 13,300 and a wave of businesses got the go-ahead from Gov. Jim Justice to resume operations.
WorkForce West Virginia says the number of unemployed state residents fell by 23,400 in May, but the overall number remains high at 100,400.
More than 250,000 unemployment claims have been processed in West Virginia since the pandemic forced widespread shutdowns in March.
West Virginia added 8,800 jobs last month in the leisure and hospitality industries.