Georgia Processes More Unemployment Claims In 14 Weeks Than In Past 7 Years

Thursday, June 25, 2020

The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday they have processed over 2.7 million regular UI initial claims in the past 14 weeks, more than the last seven years combined.  Of the processed claims, over one million were identified as valid claims with enough wages to establish a claim and 91 percent have been issued a payment. 

Based on seasonally adjusted percentages, Georgia ranked 1st in the South Region and 15th nationally for lowest unemployment rate of 9.7 percent for May.  Further, Georgia ranked 6th (out of eight) in the South Region and 30th (out of 53 – including Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and Washington D.C.) in the nation with percentage change in employment of 1.9 percent from April to May.  Georgia ranked 3rd in the South Region and 12th in the nation, with a seasonally adjusted net job gain of 79,600 from April to May.  

The GDOL announced Thursday jobs numbers for all of Georgia’s Metropolitan Statistical Areas and regions.  The unemployment rate was down and likewise employment numbers were higher in all MSAs and all regions.  

“These positive indicators are promising for Georgia’s job market,” said Commissioner Mark Butler. “The significant drop in the unemployment rate in our MSAs and regions certainly suggests a rebound in our future.” 

Weekly regular UI initial claims totaled 125,725, down 6,272 over the week ending June 20. Of the weekly total, 73,460 (59 percent) were employer filed claims. Initial claims have been trending down for the last eight weeks.  Over the last 14 weeks, 2,725,734 regular UI initial claims have been processed.  From week ending March 21 through June 20, the sectors with the most regular UI initial claims processed included Accommodation and Food Services, 677,982, Health Care and Social Assistance, 322,892, Retail Trade, 308,934, Administrative and Support Services, 229,097, and Manufacturing, 209,549.  

“In the past few months, we have witnessed the lowest unemployment rate in history, the highest unemployment rate in history, the highest number of employed, and the highest number of unemployed,” said Commissioner Butler.  “While also seeing the highest jobs total and the largest over-the-month job loss, I believe we are beginning to stabilize our economy allowing Georgians to again focus on employment and spending.”

The GDOL also announced that $6,912,337,130 in state and federal benefits have been paid to claimants across the state during the past 14 weeks. This includes payments in regular state UI, Pandemic Extended Unemployment Compensation, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, and Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation. 

Payments over last week totaled $146,991,356 in regular weekly unemployment benefits. Since March 21, over $1.7 billion has been paid in regular state UI benefits. 

The number of initial unemployment claims filed throughout the United States was 1,480,000, a decrease of 60,000 from the previous week's revised level of 1,540,000.

Last week, the GDOL issued over $73 million in PUA payments to individuals who are self-employed, gig workers, 1099 independent contractors, employees of churches, employees of non-profits, or those with limited work history who do not qualify for state unemployment benefits. From week ending March 21 through June 20, 214,582 PUA claims have been validated. Of the valid PUA claims eligible for payment where a request for payment has been made, 89 percent have been paid.

In addition, the total federal funds issued for FPUC totaled over $540 million last week. Over the past 14 weeks, the GDOL has issued more than $4.7 billion in FPUC funds. FPUC provides an additional $600 weekly payment to any individual eligible for any of the unemployment compensation programs – state and federal. 

As of June 23, the Georgia Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund Balance was $1,196,154,059 down $1.351 billion, or 53 percent, from the 3/24/2020 balance of $2,547,476,454. 

At this time, the GDOL career centers are remaining closed to the public. All online services are still available as the staff continues to answer phones, return emails, and assist applicants. The GDOL will open offices to the public as soon as social distancing can be effectively implemented to protect both staff and customers.

Today, over 101,000 jobs are listed online at for Georgians to access. The GDOL offers online resources for finding a job, building a resume, and assisting with other reemployment needs.

Information on filing an unemployment claim, details on how employers can file partial claims, and resources for other reemployment assistance can be found on the agency’s webpage at

Chattanooga Chamber Calendar Of Events July 6-10

Local Business Women Repair Zone Launches Hands-On Online Workshops

Governor Lee Announces Fewest Distressed Counties In Tennessee Since 2007

July 7, ONLINE - Member Orientation 8:30-10 a.m. Join us via Zoom to learn more about your member benefits and what's going on at the Chamber. Register at No cost. ... (click for more)

Women Repair Zone, a local Chattanooga business where women instructors teach women DIY home repair, home improvement and auto maintenance skills, has launched online workshops that continue ... (click for more)

Governor Bill Lee announced that Tennessee has the fewest distressed counties statewide since 2007, down from 15 in 2019 to 11 counties according to the Appalachian Regional Commission. “McNairy, ... (click for more)


Chattanooga Chamber Calendar Of Events July 6-10

July 7, ONLINE - Member Orientation 8:30-10 a.m. Join us via Zoom to learn more about your member benefits and what's going on at the Chamber. Register at No cost. July 7, ONLINE – North Chattanooga Chamber Council Meeting noon-1 p.m. Join us as we hear from Dionne Jenkin, VP of Diversity and Inclusion at Tennessee Valley Federal Credit Union, ... (click for more)

Local Business Women Repair Zone Launches Hands-On Online Workshops

Women Repair Zone, a local Chattanooga business where women instructors teach women DIY home repair, home improvement and auto maintenance skills, has launched online workshops that continue to "empower women to do their own repairs so they can save money, build confidence and increase independence." With hands-on workshops such as Basic Masonry Repairs, women will do the ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Coronavirus Cases Rise By 1,291 In Tennessee; There Are Nine More Virus Deaths

Coronavirus cases in Tennessee rose by 1,291, bringing the total to 51,431, state health officials said on Sunday. Of the total, 30,254 have recovered. There were nine more deaths in the state, bringing the total to 646. Officials said 11 more have been hospitalized - up to 2,871. Tennessee is approaching 900,000 on its testing program. Hamilton County has had 53 ... (click for more)

Sheriff Hammond Has No Intention Of Stepping Down; Asks To Meet With Preachers, Others On "Solutions"

Sheriff Jim Hammond said Sunday afternoon he has no intention of stepping down, despite a letter from 38 preachers asking him to do so. The sheriff said he would not discuss individual cases of alleged racism and abuse on the part of his deputies, saying those cases are going through the courts. He said he has offered to meet with the pastors and other groups for a discussion ... (click for more)


Time To Examine Tax Breaks For Churches - And Response

Churches are classified for tax purposes as 501(c)(3) organizations. This means contributions to them are generally tax deductible and they pay no property taxes on their real estate facilities. In return for this there are certain restrictions they must follow, the most important being: "Specifically, 501(c)(3) organizations are prohibited from engaging in excessive political ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Sunday Funnies

Due to my strong belief that ‘country comes before self,’ this rare issue of The Sunday Funnies is necessary because of Independence Day, but this week The Saturday Funnies will again appear. Our long-term readers know that the weekly funnies come from the emails that are shared during the week, thus the disclaimer But do 4th of July jokes get stale by the 5th? A crafty teacher ... (click for more)