The federal program extending unemployment benefits past the 26-week limit offered by the state will end on Dec. 28 unless Congress opts to extend it.
Bill Kramer is the Chief of Unemployment Insurance for the State of Alaska. His department is working to get people back on their feet before the program closes for good.
“We’re trying to make sure that people hear about it and know about it and everybody who’s filing is getting the message about the end of it coming up and trying to encourage people to utilize the job centers or whatever resources they can to try and get back to work,” Kramer said. “Hopefully we can find work for most people so they can move on and get reemployed.”
Approximately 6,500 unemployed workers in Alaska are taking part in the Emergency Unemployment Compensation program.
Kramer encourages those who are affected to look into alternate resources for household aid.
- Heli-skiing has long been a controversial topic in Haines. The interests of the industry often clash with people who live near heliports and don’t want the noise disturbing their peace and quiet. But there’s another group that’s impacted by helicopter noise: mountain goats.
- In the Northwest Arctic, caribou hunting has been contentious for years. Alaska’s largest herd continues to decline while tensions have emerged between rural subsistence users and outside hunters.
- From the Aleutian island of Akutan to the arctic village of Kiana, 13 communities have been crowned champions of a rural energy competition. The U.S. Department of Energy recently announced that it will help these communities cut their energy use by 15 percent by training local utility providers.
- It’s costing 14 percent more to take the ferry to and from the Lower 48. The higher fare is part of another round of tariff increases aimed at boosting income and equalizing rates across all routes.