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VEC: Delayed $300 weekly lost wages assistance could hit banks accounts Friday

VEC
VEC(NBC12)
Published: Oct. 15, 2020 at 4:38 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - A spokeswoman for the Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) says the additional $300 weekly benefits through the “Lost Wages Assistance” (LWA) program could hit Virginians' bank accounts as early as Friday morning.

On Thursday, VEC Spokesperson Joyce Fogg said there was a delay in sending those benefits out this week due to the federal holiday on Monday and then a system outage due to the fiber line that was cut overnight Monday leaving severe impacts the following day.

Virginia voter registration portal restored after fiber cut caused outage ]

“We had no internet access on Tuesday,” Fogg said.

Fogg added VEC employees were also focused on making sure the weekly unemployment benefits claims were processed for the week.

Per the VEC website, the LWA program is a federal program providing an additional $300 per week to Virginia claimants who are eligible for at least $100 per week in unemployment insurance compensation from any of the following:

  • Unemployment compensation, including regular State Unemployment Compensation, Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) and Unemployment Compensation for Ex-Service members (UCX)
  • Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC)
  • Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA)
  • Extended Benefits (EB)

The duration of the benefits was for a six-week period beginning August 1 and ending September 5.

However, according to Ned Oliver with the Virginia Mercury, Virginia is one of five states where benefits had not yet been distributed as of this week.

“Officials had hoped to send the money out on Sept. 30, but missed the self-imposed deadline, blaming a programming error,” Oliver wrote.

President Donald Trump announced the program back in early August, with many claimants across the country receiving the additional money roughly 30 days later.

However, Fogg said there were issues in receiving the funds from the national level.

Roughly $481 million was allocated to Virginia from FEMA, but that money had to be routed to the Virginia Department of Emergency Management first.

“To be honest, there was a problem with meshing all those agencies together,” Fogg told the Virginia Mercury.

As of Thursday, the $481 million was in the works of being processed to 389,000 claimants. Fogg added text messages were sent to the claimants about this week’s delay.

Meanwhile, because of the delay, the VEC will distribute those funds as a lump sum for all six weeks, according to Fogg. This means workers who qualify should expect a $1,800 deposit.

If a claimant has not received their LWA funds in the next few days, you are urged to contact the VEC.

Copyright 2020 WWBT. All rights reserved.

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