Baker applying for Trump unemployment funds

Would provide a $400 enhanced UI benefit

GOV. CHARLIE BAKER doesn’t like the way President Trump’s $400 enhanced unemployment insurance benefit is funded, but he’s getting in line for the money with nothing else coming along from Congress.

Baker said the state has submitted a letter to the Trump administration indicating the administration intends to apply for funding for the $400 supplemental unemployment insurance benefit proposed by Trump in an executive order.

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Bruce Mohl

Editor, CommonWealth

About Bruce Mohl

Bruce Mohl is the editor of CommonWealth magazine. Bruce came to CommonWealth from the Boston Globe, where he spent nearly 30 years in a wide variety of positions covering business and politics. He covered the Massachusetts State House and served as the Globe’s State House bureau chief in the late 1980s. He also reported for the Globe’s Spotlight Team, winning a Loeb award in 1992 for coverage of conflicts of interest in the state’s pension system. He served as the Globe’s political editor in 1994 and went on to cover consumer issues for the newspaper. At CommonWealth, Bruce helped launch the magazine’s website and has written about a wide range of issues with a special focus on politics, tax policy, energy, and gambling. Bruce is a graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He lives in Dorchester.

About Bruce Mohl

Bruce Mohl is the editor of CommonWealth magazine. Bruce came to CommonWealth from the Boston Globe, where he spent nearly 30 years in a wide variety of positions covering business and politics. He covered the Massachusetts State House and served as the Globe’s State House bureau chief in the late 1980s. He also reported for the Globe’s Spotlight Team, winning a Loeb award in 1992 for coverage of conflicts of interest in the state’s pension system. He served as the Globe’s political editor in 1994 and went on to cover consumer issues for the newspaper. At CommonWealth, Bruce helped launch the magazine’s website and has written about a wide range of issues with a special focus on politics, tax policy, energy, and gambling. Bruce is a graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He lives in Dorchester.

The governor doesn’t like the proposal because it takes money set aside by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help states deal with COVID-19 costs and repurposes it to pay three-quarters of the unemployment benefit. The remaining quarter of the cost would come from states themselves, most likely from other federal aid.

“As I said before, I don’t think this is the right way to do this. I worry a lot that we’re taking money from federal reimbursements associated with the first four months of COVID,” he said. “But if this program is there and it’s the only thing that’s there, I don’t think Massachusetts should pass on that.”

Baker has urged Congress to pass another stimulus package.