West Virginia pays off federal unemployment loans

West Virginia fully paid off its federal unemployment loans received during the COVID-19 pandemic and has enough money to also provide businesses with lower premium rates next year, Gov. Jim Justice announced Thursday.

During the pandemic, West Virginia borrowed about $185 million from the federal government through loans from the Department of Treasury so it could continue to pay unemployment benefits amid historically high unemployment rates. The state was able to secure $220 million in state funds for the unemployment insurance trust fund, which allowed it to fully pay off the loan and provide businesses with a 25% reduction

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