Jefferson City, MO –– The U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) yesterday announced that the Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations (DOLIR) is the recipient of two grants, totaling over $1.8 million to improve and promote its short-time compensation (STC) program called the Missouri Shared Work Unemployment Compensation program. Missouri is the first state to apply for and receive the maximum amount available under the grant program.
In supporting Missouri’s Show Me Strong Recovery efforts, the Shared Work program can be particularly beneficial in returning employees to work during an uncertain time by giving employers the flexibility to scale up or scale down the workforce based on changing business needs. The program allows an employer to bring temporarily laid-off employees back to the job by dividing the available work among a group of employees. Shared Work employees receive a portion of their unemployment benefits while working reduced hours and retaining employer benefits.
“Missouri’s Shared Work program benefits both large and small employers and their employees. It’s a win for employers, a win for workers, and a win for local Missouri economies. This grant will help both Missouri businesses and workers, particularly as we continue our recovery efforts,” Missouri Governor Mike Parson stated.
U.S. Secretary of Labor Eugene Scalia yesterday said, “The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act provided funding for States to implement and expand their Short-Time Compensation programs and I am pleased Missouri is stepping forward to take advantage of these funds.”
DOLIR reminds Missouri employers that now is a particularly beneficial time to enroll in the Shared Work program as the CARES Act provides for 100% federal reimbursement of the State’s Shared Work benefits costs through December 26, 2020.
While roughly half of the states have an STC program, Missouri was one of the original states to have established its program more than 30 years ago.
The CARES Act provides up to $100 million in grants for states to implement or improve an STC program and for the promotion to and enrollment of employers. The maximum amount available to each state is set in statute. Missouri proposes to use the grant funds to ensure businesses in the state are aware of the Shared Work program and its advantages, to enroll more businesses, and to continue to streamline the reporting processes for employers and workers.
For more information on the Missouri Shared Work program, visit sharedwork.mo.gov.