Unemployment ramps up in South Dakota

PIERRE, S.D. — Gov. Kristi Noem says historic levels of unemployment are plaguing the state’s workforce.

Over 6000 claims for jobless benefits were filed this past week, on top of the 8100 claims the previous week. With the Cares Act program, PUA, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, goes online next week, that’s when Noem says the numbers will only get worse.

The PUA will offer jobless benefits to people who have not qualified before, such as people who are self-employed, independent contractors, and part-time workers.

Also part of the Cares Act, $349 billion dollars in small business loans, with $1.2 billion coming to South Dakota, through nearly 8000 paycheck protection program loans.

But that paycheck protection money has been depleted, its gone. While negotiations continue on Capitol Hill for a solution, Noem says there are short-term options within the state.

Gov. Noem said “With the SBA loan process and PPP process potentially not having enough revenue in it, the state can turn around some money quickly, its small dollar amounts, these loans are from $5000 to $75,000.”

The state’s Office of Economic Development is receiving hundreds of applications for relief through the governor’s small business relief fund.

Categories: Coronavirus, Local News, South Dakota News