Enterprise house owners ask Governor Jared Polis to finish further $ 300 per week unemployment controls – CBS Denver
(CBS4)– More than 100 business owners in northern Colorado sent a letter to Governor Jared Polis urging him to end the increased $ 300 a week unemployment benefit. They say the extra money is preventing people from going back to work, which has resulted in severe labor shortages.
“People can do arithmetic, right?” says Pete Gazlay, owner of Total Facility Care in Loveland.
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Gazlay directed the letter. He works in commercial cleaning and says he has to give up jobs because he has 30 employees. He says he got around 25 applicants a week before the last stimulus payment in March. Then it dropped to about 7 applicants a week.
He is not alone. Help-seeking signs are everywhere, many companies have reduced hours, and some offer thousands of dollars plus hiring bonuses.
“If you look at it that way, every company is hiring people and it is extremely difficult for them to do that,” said Gazlay.
He says he wrote the letter to the governor in desperation after trying repeatedly to reach someone in his office for weeks. At the moment, the increased unemployment is expected to end on September 6th.
“Yes, it’s only six weeks, but those six weeks are important in the life of a company,” said Gazlay.
Polis spokesman Conor Cahill says, “It’s free federal government money for Colorado, and if Colorado ended it … it would pull about $ 600-800 million out of our state.”
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Gazlay says it’s not free. Entrepreneurs like him pay the bill for unemployment.
“We pay for it and it actually harms us instead of being the safety net it is supposed to be.”
Mindy McCloughan, CEO of the Loveland Chamber of Commerce, says the longer companies fail to find work, the longer the economic recovery will take.
“While it has boosted the economy, it has had some unintended consequences that we will pay for for a long, long, long time to come,” McCloughan said.
Gazlay says Polis can help companies with the stroke of a pen: “I hope he listens and hears the plight of so many business owners – from service companies like mine to professional organizations – who are struggling to recruit people.”
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Polis is aware of the problem. He offered to pay people between $ 1,200 and $ 1,600 to go back to work in May and June. Its spokesman says 18,000 people took advantage of the offer at a cost of around $ 5.2 million. Gazlay and other business owners say getting rid of the extra $ 300 a week would be a better incentive. More than two dozen other states have ended extended unemployment benefits.