Gov. Cuomo says New York may need federal help to pay unemployment benefits
ALBANY — Gov. Andrew Cuomo admitted Monday that the Empire State could run out of state funds to pay unemployment benefits to New Yorkers should the coronavirus pandemic continue to ravage the economy.
“No, that’s why federal government has to provide funding, we don’t have money,” he told reporters during his daily briefing in Albany.
“It depends on how many people moving forward asks for unemployment benefit and how long it goes on, but it’s in the billions of dollars.”
New York has paid out $3.1 billion in unemployment benefits since March 9 and April 22, as over 1.4 million individuals have submitted applications for unemployment benefits, according to the State Department of Labor.
Meanwhile state budget officials reported in a new analysis that the recession caused by COVID-19 could be worse than the Sept. 11 attacks and the Great Recession of 2008.
The state economy stands to lose $243 billion directly tied to losses from the pandemic, according to the State Division of Budget.
The DOL also experienced a security breach over the weekend, impacting around three dozen individuals — which was news to Cuomo.
“I have not heard that about that at all, has anyone heard about that?” the governor asked, before his top aide Melissa DeRosa explained to reporters.
“So there were, I think it was three dozen people who — it was a human error, it wasn’t malicious — where two pieces of paper were stuck together and sent, those people have been contracted and the ones who have not, will be been contacted today,”
“They’re going to receive free credit reporting surveillance for a year and making sure to process those claims as a priority. But yes, it was. It was human error, it was not malicious. And it’s being dealt with,” she added.
A DOL spokeswoman said the issue was discovered Saturday night and on Sunday morning the agency “began contacting those who were impacted.”
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