72,000 Virginians will see two week delay in $300-a-week unemployment benefits

"You need to do better."
Virginia Unemployment Commission
Posted at 5:42 PM, Sep 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-30 18:44:06-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Seventy-two-thousand Virginians have applied for lost wages assistance, which is an additional $300 per week in benefits, but many of them told CBS 6 they're frustrated because the state has delayed their release.

For example, Adam Dalton, who said his job was not following CDC guidelines, and lives with parents and a sister who all have diabetes

"I felt it was best for me and my family to take a leave of absence," said Dalton.

Dalton applied for unemployment in late July and got it, and when the $600 additional dollars a week from the federal government stopped, he was excited to receive the additional $300 a week the President authorized FEMA to send states on August 1.

But nearly two months later, Dalton and thousands of others in Virginia have not seen a cent of the money.

"We were supposed to get paid September 30, and they decided to change it two days before then, and not notify anyone, until October 15," Dalton said.

Joyce Fogg, the spokesperson for the Virginia Employment Commission, blamed the delay on a programming error and said they are working to get this resolved and hope payments will go out sooner than October 15.

But Dalton and others said they are angry.

"You need to do better, listen to us. I feel like you're doing nothing to try to help us," Dalton said.

Fogg said if you are eligible for the extra $300 per week, you will receive the money in a lump sum.

So, if you qualify for the six weeks available, you will get $1,800.

Fogg said there are potentially 454,650 claimants who are eligible for the lost wages assistance benefits.

To be eligible you must receive at least $100 in benefits from the state and certify that it is due to COVID-19.

Virginia Together: The Rebound Richmond campaign is here to help. Find information on who is hiring, investigations into unemployment payment issues, financial advice on making ends meet, and mental health advice on managing the pressures. These stories will be featured often on CBS 6 News and can be found by clicking this link.