Massachusetts Executive Office of Labor and Workplace Development Secretary Rosalin Acosta announced on March 25 that the state intends to issue between $2 billion and $3 billion of bonds to help replenish the state’s unemployment trust fund. The move is aimed at relieving employers in the state of the full responsibility for paying down the trust fund’s debt through higher unemployment taxes after the state’s borrowing from the federal government increased during the coronavirus pandemic.
Further details regarding the bond sales are expected after April 15 when updated employer contribution projections, benefit payment estimates, and trust fund balance data become available.
Unemployment insurance is a joint federal and state program that provides temporary monetary benefits to eligible laid-off workers who are actively seeking new employment. Qualifying individuals receive unemployment compensation as a percentage of their lost wages in the form of weekly cash benefits while they search for new employment.
The federal government oversees the general administration of state unemployment insurance programs. The states control the specific features of their unemployment insurance programs, such as eligibility requirements and length of benefits.