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Thousands of Californians Still Waiting For Unemployment Checks

Aired 9/24/13 on KPBS News.

Tens of thousands of Californians still face delays in getting unemployment checks because of a problem implementing a new payment system at the Employment Development Department.

The EDD’s Loree Levy said the staff worked through the weekend to fix the problem and clear the backlog. But she said, as of Monday, about 80 thousand people were still waiting to have their claims to be processed.

“However, looking down the road, we do see the right trend in place where we have fewer and fewer people coming into the backlog,” Levy said. “At the same time we’re clearing some cases out of the backlog, so we do anticipate some progress, certainly, over the days ahead.”

Levy said she cannot predict when the backlog will be cleared, but employees will work through the coming weekend.

She said a combination of factors caused the delay. There were EDD staff reductions because of federal budget cuts, more people filed for unemployment and there were problems making the transition to the new payment system.

Comments

Avatar for user 'EvaS'

EvaS | September 25, 2013 at 10:20 a.m. ― 1 year, 10 months ago

My husband has been waiting over three weeks for his unemployment payment. When he tries to call EDD, after 12 noon, the message saying "due to budget cuts and the sequester, please call us between the hours of eight and 12 noon". When you call from 8 to 12 you get a different message that says "our phone lines are busy right now we can't take your call please submit a request online". We submitted a request online over two weeks ago. We have yet to hear anything back. Finally, last week there was an update posted on the EDD website explaining the issue with the upgrade and that employees were "working day and night and through the weekend" to get everything caught up. Are we supposed to feel sorry for these boneheads? At least they have jobs and are getting a regular paycheck!

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