Some in Michigan make more from unemployment than work during coronavirus

Special stimulus and unemployment funding during the coronavirus crisis means that the average welder at Moran Iron Works can make $82 more a week while out on unemployment than they can coming back to work, at least for the next couple months. (Photo by Tom Moran)

Moran Iron Works makes large-scale metal parts, the kind of manufacturing work that has classified the northern Michigan factory as essential during the coronavirus pandemic. 

“We’re sending fabrications to the epicenter of where the virus hit,” owner Tom Moran said. “We’re keeping power plants going, and that’s keeping respirators going.”

After laying off 75 percent of its 80-person workforce when contracts dried up, the company is seeing a rebound in orders. Some are new, while other projects — like the new Shepler’s ferry to Mackinac Island — no longer are idled. 

But Moran is running into a problem: His workers aren’t ready to come back; they’re telling him they can make more through July by collecting unemployment benefits.

“Now we want to bring people back, and they don’t want to come back,” Moran said.

There are 1.178 million Michigan workers who filed for jobless benefits since mid-March, when coronavirus prompted a stay-at-home shutdown of non-essential businesses.

Two weeks later, Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, adding $600 a week to each worker’s unemployment check for up to four months.

Moran Iron Works supervisor Kurt LaLonde at work. Owner Tom Moran said some workers are legitimately wary of returning to work during the pandemic. 

That brings the maximum unemployment payment to $962 per week, which is $82 more than Moran pays his average welders, and $353 more than the average wage in the northeast Lower Peninsula. In fact, it’s not far off the average wage in all of Michigan, prompting fears among merchants and economists that, once the economy is reopened, businesses will still be face competing — at least for a time — with larger-than-normal unemployment checks.

“The restaurant owners are really worried about it,” said Samantha Farley, a business owner in Indian River. “They can’t touch what unemployment pays.”

The extra money in lower-wage communities can provide an “incentive not to go back to work,” said the Rev. Davis Wallis, pastor of Church of the Straits in Mackinaw City. Wallis and his congregation operate one of Cheboygan County’s food banks that are open from November through April, when tourism employees are unemployed and “living on a lot less income.”

“There’s no doubt they’re going to be making more until July 25,” said Wallis. 

“I don’t begrudge people for taking advantage of it,” he said. “But I don’t think it’s good economics to pay someone more than when they were working.”

Some employers, like Moran, say they’re already concerned about rebuilding their workforce.

Economists also are studying wage replacement rates during the pandemic, and looking at how that will influence economic recovery.

Short-term, the payments provide a lifeline to workers amid the global economic crisis. They also keep money flowing into the general economy, providing an overall boost. 

But as jobs return, the economic rebound will depend on getting people back to work. 

“There’s a behavioral component,” said Chris O’Leary, senior economist at the Upjohn Institute in Kalamazoo. “Once people get on (unemployment checks), it takes them a while to get off. Especially when the wage replacement rate is so high.”

That’s not a conversation that’s taken place in Michigan until recently. The state  “is not generous with benefits,” said Eric Lupher, president of the Citizens Research Council of Michigan. 

Before coronavirus, Michigan’s maximum payout on unemployment was $362 per week, an amount set in 2003 and unchanged since. The maximum duration was rolled back from 26 weeks to 20 weeks as the state confronted budget shortfalls during the Great Recession.

This spring, those rules have changed: Michigan has broadened the categories for workers who can file for unemployment, and they now can get benefits for 26 weeks. A federal extension makes benefits possible for 39 weeks. 

Laid-off workers offered a return to work must accept it, according to the Department of Labor, but coronavirus creates exceptions for people caring for people, like children who no longer attend school. 

And now, due to federal funding, people receiving jobless benefits also will get that extra $600 per week through the CARES Act. That amount is equal to $15 per hour for a 40-hour work week, and will be paid for up to 20 weeks. A person earning maximum state benefits and the CARES payment will take home the equivalent of $24.05 per hour for a full-time job. 

Work continues at Moran Iron Works in Onaway, but the company needs more of its laid-off employees to come back. (Photo by Tom Moran)

By comparison, the median hourly wage in the state, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, was $18.60 per hour, or $744 for a 40-hour week, in 2019. 

That wage figure includes communities where the median hourly wage is higher, like Ann Arbor ($20.96), Metro Detroit ($20.01) and Lansing-East Lansing ($19.39), leaving less incentive to stay on unemployment. 

Other areas are much lower, like Bay City ($16.04), Benton Harbor ($16.65) and Saginaw ($16.84). 

But the lowest median weekly wage in the state is in the northeast Lower Peninsula, where towns like Cheboygan, Alpena and Mackinaw City now find jobless benefits can climb higher than earnings. Weekly pay in those areas range from an average $649 to $761, according to BLS county-level data released in 2019.

In Indian River, about 25 miles south of the Mackinac Bridge, Farley said Main Street looks empty. April is always a slow month until the tourist season ignites, but Michigan’s stay-at-home order stalled it further. Five employees at her two family owned stores, McClutchey’s Casual Clothing, were laid off, and Farley isn’t sure if hiring for a few more will happen to get them through the busy summer months.

     

    As she waits to see when her store can reopen, Farley said she and other business owners in town are wondering if they’ll be able to find staffing before summer. She knows one person making $1,500 more a month with the jobless benefits and believes others in her community are in a similar situation.

    “I think they’re comfortable to receive more on unemployment,” Farley said.

    That concern reaches across Cheboygan County, where nearly 15 percent of workers can’t find work during fall and winter, and the top employment sectors are the low-paying hotel and food service industries. Full-time jobs are hard to find, according to social services providers, leaving many people working part of the year, sometimes at more than one job.

    In nearby Onaway, west of Rogers City in Presque Isle County, about 20 employees are showing up daily at Moran’s ironworks facility. They’re project managers, welders and other workers trained to do the specialty, large-scale metalworking. 

    Others, Tom Moran said, “were scared, legitimately,” as news of the virus spread and many wanted to stay home. But after an initial slowdown in orders,  the work started to come back. Employees now have their temperatures checked every morning and they’re answering questions about symptoms before starting their shift.

    Moran said he once would worry about violating workers’ Constitutional rights by taking those steps. Now, he said, “I can’t get my workforce back … for probably six months to a year.”

    In the meantime, Moran will seek and take jobs that let him keep a full pipeline of orders that can be fulfilled by fewer workers. That might cut his revenue by half this year, he said.

    “When my people aren’t here, I’ll do the best I can with what I’ve got.”

    RESOURCES:

    Facts matter. Trust matters. Journalism matters.

    If you learned something from the story you're reading please consider supporting our work. Your donation allows us to keep our Michigan-focused reporting and analysis free and accessible to all. All donations are voluntary, but for as little as $1 you can become a member of Bridge Club and support freedom of the press in Michigan during a crucial election year.

    Pay with VISA Pay with MasterCard Pay with American Express Donate now

    Comment Form

    Add new comment

    Plain text

    • No HTML tags allowed.
    • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
    • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
    CAPTCHA
    This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

    Comments

    Matt
    Sun, 04/26/2020 - 4:36pm

    Puts employers in wonderful spot of trying to use their PPP money to open their business with a bunch of pissed off employees. One of the dumber ideas on a pile of dumb moves the CVD panic has spawned!

    Good point
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:31am

    That's because we now see that essential workers are underpaid.

    Matt
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:04pm

    CVD has caused a lot of brain damage amoung other issues.

    MAGA Nation
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 4:36pm

    No, that was before COVID19, we call it TDS Trump Derangement Syndrome an abnormal love for everything Trump, like a willingness to get injected with Lysol for their leader.

    Mitchell Robinson
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:40pm

    yup. 100%

    Cynthia
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 1:48pm

    Exactly. Wages are far below the actual cost to live anywhere in the US.

    Lisa
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 2:22pm

    I'm a dietary aide at a nursing home, so I'm considered an essential worker. I go to work everyday and risk my life to earn a paycheck. Now you have non essential employee's staying home collecting unemployment and getting more money than I am. Wow! What part of that's not fair doesn't the government understand?

    Sad
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 4:34pm

    It is unfair because YOU are underpaid, but we are protecting YOU and reducing your risks by us staying home. You should write to your elected representatives to explain the unfairness and demand higher minimum wages.

    D Trump
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 5:47pm

    Everyone can go to work with some disinfectant injections, isn't that right?

    Marshall
    Sun, 04/26/2020 - 6:59pm

    Incentivize people to decline work. Send stimulus checks to retirees. Shucks, it’s only money. Borrowed money. Our grandkids can foot the bill. How can we look them in the face.

    Redwings68
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:54am

    I don’t know that employers who are paying less than someone makes on unemployment benefits are deserving of much sympathy if their workers don’t want to rush back to work. If this can do away with some of these enslavement-wage employers who pay their workers so horribly that they still need food stamps and cash assistance to survive, it’s no great loss.

    Common Sense
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:51am

    Redwing, please explain how it is “enslavement” wages? If you do not like what your employer pays you there is nothing keeping you from taking another job. The great thing about living in a free country is that you are free to make the best use of your skills and intelligence to be as successful as you can. If you are not successful or you believe you are being underpaid then look no farther than the mirror for the problem.

    Anonymous
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 4:38pm

    Not much choice in USA.

    middle of the mit
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 11:31pm

    Could you explain to us how you contracting a disease and infecting others is Freedumb? While others are trying to save lives, you PRO LIFE FOR THE LIVING? And you now deem those people Patriots willing to die for their economy, as opposed to their country? In your words:.

    {{The great thing about living in a free country is that you are free to make the best use of your skills and intelligence to be as successful as you can}}}

    And now your sustenance is leveraged against what? A continuous supply of unskilled people who will continually contract a VERY CONTAGIOUS disease? Guess what dill hole? YOU AREN'T SAFE! And why don't you care about the people that are sustaining YOUR LIFE?

    And there is no consequence or deliberation about lives that could be saved Ohhh PRO LIFE ONES!

    PRO-LIFE for the COVID-19 resistant!

    That is the NEW PRO-LIFE movement!

    Ask them. It is not controversial.

    They will tell you. FLAT OUT. They are doing it right here, right now. On this board. Do you hear them? You allow them to post their thoughts.

    Will you accept them at their word?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e25p0Y3Vd38

    You wreck me baby. Tom Petty. It's almost like the music is in sync. How does that happen?

    See I try to be Tom Petty, but what I am really feeling?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zO6nRXPzX1A
    Danzig Mother

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3L4YrGaR8E4&list=PL2EbESdPFdo4PtTC22P-A3...

    Rage against the machine

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rMjjsjNBS_4&list=PL2EbESdPFdo4PtTC22P-A3...

    Take the POWER BACK!

    Rage against the Machine! What machine do you think they are raging against?

    Vote by mail! Absentee ballot!

    WE voted into law. Use it. It CAN NOT BE ABUSED. NOT in this State. WE have voter ID.

    This isn't Republicans in North Carolina~!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kl4wkIPiTcY&list=PL2EbESdPFdo4PtTC22P-A3...

    Sleep now in the fire. rage against the machine.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_vQt_v8Jmw&list=PL2EbESdPFdo4PtTC22P-A3...

    FREEDOM! Watch the video.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4smim2MNvF8

    Know your enemy!

    Or watch Faux news.

    And keep on keepin' on!

    Post this if you have the guts to.

    I do.

    Marshall
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:24pm

    Interesting thought. If unemployment pays $24 per hour, I think a LOT of laid off workers would do better than when they worked. I wasn't really thinking that sympathy for employers was in order. Just that the money being used to pay these benefits doesn't actually exist. Future generations will be stuck with the IOU being written now. As far as the enslavement thing, I don't get it. If a worker is underpaid and has marketable skills, why have they not already changed jobs?

    Sheriff
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 4:42pm

    No because those people would spend the money and help the economy. They could afford their medicine AND groceries.

    Malarkey
    Sun, 05/03/2020 - 2:18am

    They're taking money from the state...if the state gives me 1000 dollars and I spend 700, (even if it's all taxed at 100% which is absurd) the state STILL loses 300 dollars per person. You're not serious are you?

    Malarkey
    Sun, 05/03/2020 - 2:09am

    Again the ignorance has me at a loss for words...the state is losing billions in tax revenue, funding nearly 1 million people with unemployment benefits, an untold number of millions (billions?) with welfare, and people like you seem to think a fairy will come along and sprinkle fairy dust to fund a macro-economy. It's would be. almost laughable, if it weren't so tragic...

    Do your part
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:32am

    Just send your check back.

    Todd
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 11:52am

    Great point!! I've advised all of the Trump haters to do the same. I'm glad I didn't qualify for this waste and if i did, I would have donated it.

    Oh Todd!
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 4:40pm

    It's OUR money, not Trump's

    Dr.big
    Wed, 05/13/2020 - 10:50am

    yes because you deserve more to sit home then go to work, how did you pay bills before covid 19. I am sure Walmart is enjoying the business while many stores are going out of business, or Amazon where you could buy whatever you want while delivery companies are working 12-14 hours a day not making any incentives. This is not right, your life to sit home is no more valuable then the essential workers any where for medical to cashiers...really the essential workers are those who need to be compensated! The more government gives the more you want. The government will take care of me!

    Dr.big
    Wed, 05/13/2020 - 10:42am

    BS getting paid more to sit home then go to work. I wasnt born with a silver spoon in my mouth, worked in a restaurant many years paid my way back to college to better my future, struggled with grades still graduated. Hard work pays off. This is not Trumps fault it is the political parties fighting between them. Socialist let the government take care of us. Drink the kool-aid.

    Bernie
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 7:58pm

    Like saying send back your social security check. It's a socialism

    Feelin the Bern...
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 9:24am

    Exactly! Right, Matt? LOL

    middle of the mit
    Wed, 04/29/2020 - 12:26am

    I am convinced that not only him, but kAren gRand and duane are paid by the Mackinaw Center for Public Destruction.

    They seem to be the first commenters on almost all of the articles here. And all of them would literally block Bridge from Bridges own website.

    Just trying to point out the obvious, just like you.

    Be well my friend!

    But the music speaks!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T-8BoWU3XMo

    The ghost of Thom Joad.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u3JTI-FeTx0

    Township rebellion. Still Raging.

    Good Thing
    Sun, 04/26/2020 - 7:09pm

    That's a GOOD THING. The whole point was to pay people to stay home, make them not want to go out unless absolutely necessary.

    Marshall
    Sun, 04/26/2020 - 7:58pm

    Wouldn’t capping benefits at 95% of wages have been OK? I don’t blame the workers for taking it, but it seems like it could have been planned better.

    Who asked you?
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:30am

    Micromanage much? No more NERDS, 1.0, 2.0, or any other. You had your turn. We LOVE Whitmer!

    Malarkey
    Sun, 05/03/2020 - 2:22am

    Are you still going to love her when there's no revenue to fund even the most basic things? 350 billion lost already in tax revenue...how can you guys be so foolish? Where do you think the money to fund the state comes from? At this rate, the state will go bankrupt...

    Todd
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:31am

    A good thing??? Do you realize that this is all borrowed money??? Do you also realize that America will eventually be like a third world country or worse due to all of the irresponsible spending by our elected officials?? When the can keeps being kicked down the road and the point comes to the road ending and the can is not able to be kicked any longer, then what? It won't be GOOD. WAKE UP. If you have grandkids, you best hope they live their lives before it happens.

    Carry On
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:48am

    Good grandkids think prioritize the health of their grandparents and make sacrifices for them. Have you ever heard of WW2? There's a reason why they call that the great generation. They weren't complainers, like you and your ilk. They understood sacrifice for the greater good. How are you volunteering during this time?

    Todd
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 11:56am

    As expected you totally missed the point. I have a few family members who fought in WW2. Don't be condescending. You don't warrant such behavior. FYI, I served in Desert Shield and Storm. What were you doing? Probably with your ilk hiding under the bed trying to find your safe space.

    Anonymous
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 4:44pm

    ICU

    More crumbs please
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:57am

    Working class people actually spend their money to live and that helps the economy that is still open. They need the money to just get by and cover some basic monthly expenses. In contrast to the rich, they don't take the stimulus money and buy back their stocks and enrich themselves.

    Not Nervours Nelly
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:03am

    Can you name another country doing a better job?

    Well Worth It
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:37am

    Absolutely! We paid out bipartisan approved money, checks signed by President Trump, to people so they would stay home as much as possible. You could say it was selfish so we could protect ourselves from a viral spread that would overwhelm the hospitals, but also with special care for the most vulnerable of our fellow Americans.

    Revere
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:56am

    You useless communist, do you understand where that money comes from?
    You're stealing it from the working class. Their tax dollars. And when you take more than what is there, they get taxed more.
    Just wait until us working class start a war and take those resources back by force. You'll be starving in the streets with your useless wife and indoctrinated children.
    Atlas shrugged, people. Time to let these ingrates starve.

    Useful Patriot
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 4:47pm

    Um, we are at war. Only you are shooting your fellow troops, instead of the enemy, the virus. Traitor.

    middle of the mit
    Wed, 04/29/2020 - 1:19am

    Careful Revere. You are showing your cards. How? Let me count the ways....

    {{{You useless communist, do you understand where that money comes from?
    You're stealing it from the working class. Their tax dollars. And when you take more than what is there, they get taxed more.
    Just wait until us working class start a war and take those resources back by force. You'll be starving in the streets with your useless wife and indoctrinated children.}}

    See, we have been told that the working class doesn't pay taxes. Do you remember Mitt Romney and his famous 47% remark? Ha ha ha ha!

    The working class doesn't earn enough money in a year to pay more than FICA taxes and some might qualify for actual income taxes. But only if they make more than $30,000.00 and even then only in certain non urban areas.

    You might want to check yourself. Oh wait, I am doing it for you.

    The only people that are stealing from the working class are those in in managerial class and owner class.

    But you aren't a working class person, are ya?

    Who are you going to fight for? Your fellow working people, or those that employ you?

    You are literally telling us that tax money comes from working people, but the wealthy will rebut you, and my bet is that you would fight for tax breaks for business, even now. And you would do NOTHING for the working people.

    Want to take my bet? You should know I am prudent poker player. I don't bet unless I am going to win. Still want to take that bet?

    And we are now finally realizing where EXACTLY business money comes from. Do you realize that if you don't have customers that can afford your products you have NO business?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UnRhHYaX8Cw

    Fist full of steel!

    And let me leave you with a note from someone who has more money than you, me, everyone on this board and Donald J. Trump COMBINED!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xZMiOkbK3iM

    Mark Cuban Rips 'Unprepared' Trump's Virus Response, Suggests New 2020 Rival Possible | MSNBC

    You want to know why it takes Governors weeks or two to make a decision.? Listen to Mark Cuban. He has more money than all of us and the leader of Free world combined. And THAT IS WHAT YOU RESPECT, isn't it?

    Oldmichigander
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 3:47pm

    Signed and caused by Trump the bankruptcy king.

    Don't trust Trump
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 4:53pm

    Seriously only a complete idiot can bankrupt casinos.

    Totally Disgusted
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 5:17pm

    Or a flimflam man AKA CROOK

    mattlac
    Sun, 04/26/2020 - 7:31pm

    Faced with the prospect of having to pay people a living wage, employers decide to forgo doing business until the crisis* subsides (*the crisis being workers getting paid a living wage). I fixed your headline for you.

    Jess
    Sun, 04/26/2020 - 7:56pm

    Thanks for spreading the narrative that people on unemployment are "the problem".

    Kevin Grand
    Sun, 04/26/2020 - 8:44pm

    Yep, just like the democrats who held up this legislation had planned.

    Correction
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:19am

    I think you don't realize that Moscow Mitch is a Republicon.

    Makes sense
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:20am

    Kevin, the Democrats thought the working poor didn't get enough. Not sorry that displeases you.

    Kevin Grand
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 9:11am

    And as usual, you miss the forest for the trees:

    " “Supercharging unemployment benefits has long been a priority for Senate Democrats,” said Ron Wyden, the ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee. “Our proposal was not a drafting error.”"

    https://thehill.com/opinion/finance/490476-the-2-trillion-relief-package...

    Much like, oh everything, the democrats have a hand in, there are always "unintended" consequences and huge messes that will need to be addressed.

    Don't be too surprised when they push to extend the increased UI far past its original expiration date, because...reasons.

    T.P. Lunacy
    Wed, 04/29/2020 - 1:42am

    A well planned bailout for small business, that allows the L.A. Lakers, Ritz Carlton, Ruth Chris Steakhouses, and the "well to do" that employ servants at their mansions/estates and claim that they run it as business (LLC) qualify for a million dollar loans without anyone overseeing who is getting these funds that are intended to keep small business afloat.
    I'm sure the L.A. Lakers and other companies, could get by for a few more weeks. And to bailout the airlines, oil & gas, after they have been ripping us off for years, and boasting record profits... didn't manage to save a few dollars ? I believe the funds were held up to make sure provisions are made in the bill to ensure the money goes to the intended targets, so that some small business in Northern Michigan stay in business, which as far as I know don't have any Ruth Chris Steakhouses, Shack Shack's or Pro basketball teams

    Ryan v
    Sun, 04/26/2020 - 10:12pm

    The problem is too many people aren't getting there unemployment, and then you can't get ahold of anyone. That's the problem that needs attention.

    Empty hands
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:18am

    Same with the stimulus checks, but I hear they might go out after they can print Trump's signature on them, as he required. That caused an unnecessary delay. I just wonder why we aren't getting larger sized checks signed by all our elected officials that approved the funds.

    Putin
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:23am

    Ryan, yeah, Moscow Mitch is holding Americans hostage and said states like Michigan should file for bankruptcy. Moscow Mitch needs to go. He should just move to Moscow.

    Jennifer Carter
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:35pm

    Call your senators office. I did and almost 2 weeks later I got paid. It is their job to help you and they will, just have to call.

    JR
    Sun, 04/26/2020 - 10:42pm

    I think you lose unemployment by refusing recall, don't you? If you read the article, it seems to hedge the title by saying he is worried they won't come back. I think this article is false.

    sarge
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:38am

    Not sure if that happens if the business is non essential. Because non essential businesses would be disregarding the stay home order.

    middle of the mit
    Sun, 04/26/2020 - 11:56pm

    To Matt, Marshall and Good thing and any other conservative,

    Grocery stores are hiring. I have even heard of meat packing plants that have closed in MI because of the virus.

    You could get employment there. I AM SURE THEY ARE HIRING if they aren't disinfecting the places of employment that you may be applying to.

    SO SUCK IT UP AND DO IT!

    Put YOU and YOUR family in the cross hairs........or shut up.

    I don't want to be mean. I don't want to be objectionable. But when I see your comments, I, like the President tend to hit back 10x harder.

    So? It's time to put your actions where your mouth is.

    If you can't do that? WE Know you are not serious. YOU are AFRAID.

    So are the rest of us..

    That is why you won't take a job in a closed down meat factory. If they are getting sick, I could too.

    DUHHH!

    What do you think the rest of America is thinking?

    So put your actions where your mouth is and take one of the job openings and remember......

    STAY AWAY FROM YOUR ELDERLY FAMILY MEMBERS!

    Personal Responsibility!

    It's not just for breakfast anymore.

    Great points
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:50am

    Good thing actually underscores your points. LOL

    middle of the mit
    Thu, 04/30/2020 - 9:50pm

    Thank you for pointing it out. I made a mistake. See conservatives?

    It's not that hard to admit you made a mistake.

    Sorry Good thing.

    Malarkey
    Sun, 05/03/2020 - 2:47am

    I'm a Federal employee and am thus exempt from the Totalatarian orders from Lansing. I have noticed that no one else in my county has paid much attention to these ridiculous edicts either, which makes sense considering we've had about 10 cases of "Covid." People like you who kowtow to the 4th Reich are in no position to pass judgment on anyone else. The fact remains however, that the state is losing revenue at an alarming rate and the "free" money will eventually run out...once again I am floored by the narcissism of one who is completely out of touch with reality...

    middle of the mit
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 1:29am

    People on this site want to complain about people making more off of unemployment for the time being when we are subject to a disease.

    I would like to talk about a different disease.

    A Pyramid scheme. The pyramid scheme I am talking about?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s6MwGeOm8iI

    Let's just say that the Secretary of Edumacations family is involved?

    Want truth?

    Don't deny it!

    Oh! By the by. It's NOT social security!

    Betsy D
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:53am

    Isn't that the American way? [insert sarcasm and a bit of disinfectant] LMAO

    middle of the mit
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 2:02am

    Sorry I am commenting again, but in light of the recent protests, I have to post this.

    If you think the Confederate flag is means what you think it to mean, here is a video from 10/17 and you can judge for yourselves. Please at least forward it to at least 9 minutes in.

    You will hear a True Southerner tell you the absolute truth.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J5b_-TZwQ0I

    Around 13 minutes in you will see a graph when confederate statues go into place in America. Notice that it surges in the early 1900's and then again around the time of the civil rights legislation. That is when the Dixiecrats left the Democratic party and moved to the Republican party.

    Sorry if you can't handle the truth.

    It's your heritage you are fighting for. Why deny it?

    You fly the flag, your elected officials use it as face masks and then when confronted, you deny it?

    Man up! When is the party of personal responsibility going to live up to the mantra they want the rest of the nation to live up to?

    After you get rid of the guy that told us to inject disinfectants into our innards?

    That might be too late..........if you take his advice.

    Let us ALL thank God that he wasn't wearing a tan suit!!

    Revere
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:58am

    Stop watching #fakenews, Trump didn't tell anyone to inject themsevles with disinfectant.
    Your IQ must be less than your shoe size? Amazing that you had to have the "media" tell you what happened instead of watching the clip yourself. Or maybe you watched it, but Trump used too many big words for you, like "and" and "the"?
    Peasant.

    Good v. Evil
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:28am

    Whitmer is a tyrant--She said no motorboating. (Sadly we all heard it, there's video)
    Trump is good--He said he wants to inject people with disinfectant. (Sadly we all heard it, there's video)
    Moscow Mitch is good--He said states should file for bankruptcy. (Sadly we all heard it, there's video)

    Paul Revere
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:44am

    Revere, do you know if Senator Zorn is selling his Confederate Flag masks? I know Shirkey is selling ventilators. As long as GOP gets a piece of the action, it's all good.

    Todd
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 11:59am

    It's liberals like that guy who we have to put special instructions on things like hair dryers for. "Be sure not to use in bath tub."

    Me no like
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 4:52pm

    Trump seems to be spending our tax dollars on researching whether we should use the bathtub to inhale some Lysol if we get COVID. You like that?

    middle of the mit
    Wed, 04/29/2020 - 2:45am

    Here is your instructions for learning how to watch and ...well....I can't tell you how to "perceive the video".

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_TXWW6R2fgc

    That is the President talking from a view that you may not have seen.

    Put your money where your mouth is. Take my bet.

    And remember! Don't inject disinfectants in your body! There are NO federal guidelines for that.

    Blade, the daywalker vampire and I have a quasi-State compact for UV-C bullets. We are still in talks with the multi-State, NOT national compact to provide said bullets to that multi-State compact.

    The feds still think it is all fake and will be gone within a month or so. At least Blade and I will be safe. WE can shoot you with UV-C bullets and not go to jail.

    WE are disinfecting you!!

    UV-C bullets only KILL vampires! You will just receive a flesh wound and will then be disinfected.........

    Ha ha ha!!

    I have to laugh, because if I don't? These commenters will make me either cry or lose faith in humanity and those that think they follow God.

    Be glad this is the option I have taken.

    middle of the mit
    Thu, 04/30/2020 - 10:02pm

    Revere,
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_TXWW6R2fgc

    That is video of Trump from a "perspective" you may have not seen. And while you are right, he didn't ask people to ingest disinfectants, He DID ask the experts if they could used inside the human body. WATCH IT.

    And then he turned to the press and the camera and said verbatim: "I am not a doctor..but I am a person who has a good..you know what"

    That moment comes at 1:50 into the video.

    And by calling me a peasant, aren't you saying you hate America? I thought that is why we left the Kings behind.

    Are you telling me YOU ARE AN ELITIST?

    HA HA HA HA HA!!!

    You out yourselves and don't even realize you are doing it..

    Keep it comin'!

    Bay region
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 2:58am

    The average wage in Bay City and Saginaw usually isn’t a living wage, there are few full-time jobs, usually part-time, and sometimes benefits are offered and usually for full-time workers. It’s like getting in a time machine to the 80s with less work and more people getting screwed. Also, more personal and student loan debt.

    People are tired of income inequality and the affordability crisis. Without federal money and entitlements, most of the population would have been forced to move long ago. Every year there is a population decline. Try dating in a region where the average age is 50+ and 60% of the population has a high school education or less. Add low wage jobs to that list and that’s incredibly unattractive to a young college graduate. You wonder why families aren’t forming and the ones that do end up divorced and on benefits? Those that have college degrees and a bright future see the writing on the wall. So go ahead and complain about the workers, but we know it’s the business environment that’s the real problem.

    Forty percent of Michigan residents can’t meet their basic needs. Governor Whitmer put together a task force on poverty but Michigan workers have been telling their employers what’s wrong for years, they just aren’t listening. So employers turn that finger around and point it at yourself and the government, not the workers.

    If you don’t like unemployment insurance I can’t wait for you to compete against the wages offered by companies in other states for remote workers. The work culture in this state is about to be turned on its head 15 years too late. Michigan your 30+ years of being cheap have expired! Get serious about paying a living wage or better, or suffer the consequences. Also some free PR advice. When you suffer the consequences of paying an unlivable wage, don’t out yourself in the news as a cheap employer.

    Revere
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:02am

    It's funny, I started out as a nobody with a GED and I've done pretty well over the past 20 years. It took a ton of hard work and long hours, and I've never been able to get things like "high speed internet" and "smart phone" into my budget. I don't spend much money on new clothes at all except for utilitarian ones like denim for work and good boots. I've instilled this fiscally responsible attitude on my children. To look around us and see all of these peasant ingrates spending their guv'ment money on smartphones and all other manner of entertainment makes us realize where we are - Close to alone in a world of useless chaff that needs to be burned.
    We only associate with hard working people who don't blame others for their circumstances, i.e., we only associate with non-pitchfork-weilding peasant-minded cave people. You might live in a city but your mind belongs under a damp rock.

    Eyes rolling
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:38am

    Maybe you didn't need to get your GED with a computer at home, like kids have to do today, you're just an ignorant pompous jerk. You act like wifi is a luxury, it's not. It's needed for basic services and tech costs money, becomes obsolete quickly. When Whitmer smiles and talks politely, she looks great, smart, professional, polished and she speaks for me, but my comments hear express the contempt I hold in my heart for uncaring bitter people like you. It's like the SNL Obama translator. LOL

    Bay region
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 11:57am

    Budgeting alone is not the answer because the average worker isn’t being paid enough to survive in this part of Michigan.

    I’m a business owner with two advanced degrees living in the Bay region and working remotely in information technology. I’ve lived outside of Michigan and most of the people I grew up with don’t live here anymore. They can’t come back because the wages are so low or their jobs don’t exist in Mid and Northern Michigan.

    I’m glad you have a job that supports yourself but that is not the case for most people here. Talk to a labor recruiter about how angry and uncivil candidates are now. I’m upset for them. Most new jobs in the United States are low wage jobs but the pay in Michigan is unbelievably low. As a family member said recently, you have to be a two income household to survive and hope nothing goes wrong.

    I’m not comfortable with that and I don’t think this community should be either. I have seen people near my house in long car lines getting food and essentials from charity because they are one catastrophe from hunger and the street. The people that provide the food are angels, but I want better for the average worker.

    I don’t live under a rock, I live in a community with a very visible impoverished population. Their children are also impoverished and rely on free school lunches and food stamps. We all want the dignity of a living wage job so we can thrive. People are barely surviving and usually behind. That’s not the Michigan I was raised in, or the America I believe in.

    No to Somalia
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 5:03pm

    Two incomes? There was a time when as a couple we had five jobs and were still just getting by. The only reason why we have only three jobs now is because the economy sucks. In reality it's been going down ever since Trump became president. I used to say the only good thing was our 401Ks because our jobs were either disappearing or paying less. Now even our 401Ks have tanked. We so badly cannot wait for November to vote, to get rid of Trump. "What have you got to lose?" EVERYTHING, now even our health is at risk. I never imagined things could be this bad. Northern Michigan is suffering, but Southeast Michigan has not been doing much better. Most white collar people in the auto sector get canned in their 50's and can't find work. Decades of Republican majorities from gerrymandering have destroyed our great state. Change cannot come soon enough. Trump wants to deregulate everything and leave us like Somalia.

    Malarkey
    Sun, 05/03/2020 - 2:52am

    The median wage in the state of Michigan was over $60,000 the last time I checked. Where do you get your information? I would sugggest a new (reliable) source...

    Michigan First
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:14am

    So true. As a state we have to all work towards the goals you set forth above. BTW I just sort of "discovered" Bay City last year and fell in love with it, been there many times since. There are so many beautiful old buildings, tall ships, great restaurants, river side, and some cool shops! You can make it truly great again with more people like you! Trust me, make it cool and the money follows. Unfortunately, usually ruins it though. The DeVos family should stop sucking the government teat and spending that money on more family lobbying efforts. Instead they and other "Christian" families should start investing in communities across Michigan, like Bay City, Alpena, Oscoda.

    Vassilis
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 8:31am

    After an employee says no to a returning job can't the employer then deny unemployment to that worker? Seems like an easy way out of this 'problem' and what makes it a moot point.

    Fair Compensation
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:44am

    Exactly, and that employee would have to show proof of looking for another job to qualify. My guess is that with supply and demand that former employee would probably opt to work and make even more money from a company doing essential services, a company that values their taking the enormous risks of working during this pandemic. Many companies are hiring and paying top dollar to the patriotic heroes who choose to work rather than stay home. In America, it's always been socialism for the wealthy and capitalism for the working poor. Now there's a little more socialism for all, only because keeping people at home actually benefits the rich. How ironic!

    Bay region
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:21pm

    If they are sick from COVID-19, caring for someone that is, or caring for minor children they can refuse to come back to work.

    Exactly
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 5:07pm

    And by law they still have to be PAID by their employers. There is justice, just hard to find.

    Jeremy
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 8:40am

    Pay people a wage they can live on and this wouldn't happen

    Follow the money
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:41am

    I know. I wonder why people aren't up in arms about the billions in taxpayer dollar we are spending to save an archaic industry like petroleum. It's not about jobs, it's about lobbyists and retirement portfolios.

    LH
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 3:56pm

    First of all, have you ever owned a business? I would guess not. Most employers I know would pay their workers more if the market could support what they would have to charge for their product or service. Until we as a population are ready to pay more for goods and services (yes, that Big Mac will cost a few dollars, not a few cents, more), and stop buying cheap stuff made in third-world countries because labor is so much cheaper there, businesses aren't going to be able to pay more. If a huge increase in the minimum wage is forced down our throats, you will see layoffs and many businesses either severely curtailing their business or going out of business entirely. Eventually, the economy will find a new normal, one in which everything will cost more and there will still be a significant number who will be in poverty. The poverty level will just shift upward.

    Add to this that many people who are living paycheck to paycheck are doing so because of poor choices. I get that basic needs are an issue for some people, but I see way too many who have to spend their wages as soon as they get them, and then find themselves locked into payments not only for housing and transportation, but the new boat, the jet ski, the snowmobile, the side-by-side, the home theater system, the vacation they took out a loan for -- need I go on? If you can afford the "toys," then you can afford to build a cushion of a few months living expenses, maybe even save for retirement. (Un)common sense, people!

    WTF
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 5:12pm

    Ford paid workers so they could buy the cars they made, not to lease them. Pay people a living wage and you will still may lots of money, like Ford did. Don't be so F'ing greedy.

    Excalibur
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 8:52pm

    It is a matter of conjecture that Henry Ford paid his workers more because he wanted to better their lives.
    At the time, the annual Ford employee turnover rate was over 300%. Evidently conditions in Ford's workplace were so bad that people left in droves. As a result, Ford replaced his entire workforce three times every year.
    It is likely that the cost of doing so had more to do with the $5.00 a day wage than anything else.
    That is, unless you accept what Sean Hannity, Rush and most of the media declare as gospel.

    Duh
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 9:40am

    Of course Ford didn't pay more to improve the lives of his employees. He wanted to sell more cars and make himself richer, but now we have learned that his way benefited EVERYONE. Paying people a decent, living wage benefits EVERYONE, businesses and consumers alike. Contrast that with the olden days of land barons and serfs, of factory workers in Upton Sinclair's "The Jungle".

    Bay region
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 11:43pm

    As a business owner I work on a project basis. I believe in salary equity and transparency. As a leader you have to live by example. So many business owners and managers don't live by example, and they are greedy. By being transparent about each project, including revenue, costs, and project management data, my workers understand their pay. They also know why it's important to follow the timeline, avoid scope creep, work hard and efficiently so the project is profitable because we all benefit. If there was less greed and more transparency, there would be no inflation or loss of jobs.

    The wealthy are making an unfair amount of money at the expense of their workers and they know it. Our government knows it too, as many of them are wealthy. They are trying to keep the status quo which is why inequality and wealth distribution is swept under the rug and left out of almost every conversation or report on poverty. It's up to the people, empowered by the Constitution, to speak up and demand better. We can start as individuals, media, business owners, community leaders, legislators, and speaking to the Governor.

    Vassilis
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 12:36pm

    Good to hear.

    haha
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 5:44pm

    None of that is true, cool rant though.

    middle of the mit
    Wed, 04/29/2020 - 3:38am

    Are you duane?

    Why do I ask that? Because of your schizophrenic post.

    At one point you tell us this;

    {{{Most employers I know would pay their workers more if the market could support what they would have to charge for their product or service. Until we as a population are ready to pay more for goods and services (yes, that Big Mac will cost a few dollars, not a few cents, more), and stop buying cheap stuff made in third-world countries because labor is so much cheaper there, businesses aren't going to be able to pay more.}}}

    And then you tell us this:

    {{ If a huge increase in the minimum wage is forced down our throats, you will see layoffs and many businesses either severely curtailing their business or going out of business entirely. Eventually, the economy will find a new normal, one in which everything will cost more and there will still be a significant number who will be in poverty. The poverty level will just shift upward.}}}\\\

    Which one of your statements is true?

    I will help you figure it out for yourself. You said we could lower car costs by getting rid of Unions. For the last 30 years we have outsourced most car, textile and any other" low skilled job" that can be exported out of this country. WE are now seeing the consequences of that decision. The thing that you are not taking into context?

    Has the price of a car gone down in the last 30 years? Has it gone down it the last 8 years since we have right to work and a two tier wage system at the UAW? NO? The car companies just raised the price of an average vehicle?

    Where does that money go?

    Who do you think drives consumerism more........one or 15 individuals that have millions of dollars or 10 or 20 thousand that 20 or 30 thousand to spend?

    I am going with the latter. The former will just stuff it away in a tax free shelter over seas. Isn't that why we occasionally allow them to bring it back here tax free?

    But how much are those people making now without skimming off the top of the Feds relief package?

    Nothing! And they are STILL STEALING FROM MAINSTREET! LET ALONE RESIDENTIAL STREETS!

    Corporations or businesses will not and can never charge more than what consumers are willing to spend. And if consumers have no money to spend it doesn't matter how much you charge for a cheeseburger if they can't afford said cheeseburger. Meat packers are slaughtering pigs and cows because they don't have the capacity for the excess. They are not thinking into the future. Business people have been trained to think in the here and now. What happens in a few months when the meat supply is gone?

    Show me YOUR Bible verse defending the wealthy and...

    Then I will show you 15 to your one defending the poor.

    BET?

    Dan Moerman
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 8:43am

    Just goes to show how underpaid Michigan workers are. They make less than their "unemployment payments."

    Correct
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:50am

    Agree, but it's not just Michigan, Walmart employees across the country still rely on a lot government programs because their wages are too low.

    Kevin H.
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 8:49am

    I've worked for Herman Miller for almost 35 years and only make the State average wage. I make more on unemployment! Shows how cheap and tight fisted my employer is towards long term employees!

    Sad but true
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:07pm

    You just should have been born a DeVos or a Meijer, as trust baby you could lobby for a government job.

    dlm
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 8:53am

    Simple solution - PAY YOUR WORKERS MORE!

    Todd
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:32am

    Even simpler solution. If you want to be paid more, market yourself and make yourself worth more.

    To Simpleton
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:53am

    Wait, aren't you the one whining that you can't afford the labor?

    Randy
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 8:53am

    For a manufacturer, it's a good idea to just boost the pay by $82/wk. -- a 9% raise. I realize
    that does not work for restaurants and other very low wage places.

    FDR
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:55am

    When you pay the workers more, they have more to spend, in restaurants and elsewhere. Henry Ford proved that 100+ years ago. Of course oligarchs never liked the idea and swore to turn things back, and they did.

    Mike
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:03am

    Are you submitting this piece to Breitbart? 2 points:

    No one wants to be on assistance of any kind. As your article points out, this is only temporary until July. Also, your article points out that there is a devastating pandemic raging across the country. There is no cure and there is no vaccine for this virus that may be as much as ten times more contagious then a flu virus. So yes, people should shelter at home.

    My second point is that perhaps employers should be paying workers more in the first place so that unemployment benefits are considered merely a backstop. It has been said that many employed people don’t have a cushion of more than 400 dollars to cover an emergency expense.

    Todd
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:34am

    So you have never owned a small business before. It is obvious and because of this, I'll not make a fool of you for your idiotic statement.

    Do share
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:13pm

    Todd, I own a small business, so please indulge us. Most small businesses value their employees. It's the Walmarts that don't.

    Workers Unite
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:11pm

    Mike, you are absolutely correct, however after all these years of majority GOP rule, the paltry amounts of both welfare and wages are all we get, yet the sky is the limit for Ruth Christ Steak house, HomeDepot and other small business owners who got hundreds of millions of dollars.

    Wake up
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:09am

    Restaurants are going out of biz, lazy people would rather take socialist $ than work, small businesses don’t want socialist loans to go into debt. All for something not much different than the yearly flu. Biggest scam in world history.

    Social Love
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:18pm

    Restaurants are dangerous places to go during the Covid19 pandemic, not because anyone is lazy. It's because customers are smart. You should care more about employees and customers, not just your greed. You remind me of those businesses a long time ago that liked indentured slaves, slaves, child labor, no maximum hours, weekends or pee pee breaks.

    John Tomlinson
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:23am

    Well...if the company has re-opened, then the employees do not have an option - they go back to work. If they choose not to, then fire them.

    I call BS
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:20pm

    Good idea, if you don't care about your employees or your customers. BTW What's the name of your business?

    JIM
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:29am

    If you are called back to work and don't come your un-employment benefits end. It's the law and I don't see a problem with it. At some point the "gravy train" ends. It's always been that way.

    Dreams can come true
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:42pm

    I agree, then the business should pay back the PPP small business loans IMMEDIATELY, with interest. No socialist "gravy train" for businesses, but sadly it's never been that way!!!!

    middle of the mit
    Wed, 04/29/2020 - 3:46am

    They should also accept ALL LIABILITY IF ONE OF THEIR EMPLOYEES OR CUSTOMERS GET SICK.

    Don't like those personal responsibility terms?

    Why not? It's just the flu...

    Scott Roelofs
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:34am

    Furloughed employees who decline to return to work when called are taking a risk. Firstly, they may not get called again. With millions of people out of work (including welders and other skilled people), new people may get hired to permanently replace those who won't return. Secondly, the employer will learn a lot about the character and motivations and loyalty of the employees who won't work when called. Those people run the risk of losing favor in any future downturn. They may be the first to go during bad times.

    Future looks dark
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:57pm

    Meanwhile we see the character of employers who don't pay a living wage, insurance companies that overcharge and underpay benefits, landlords that raise rent, but don't make repairs, etc. etc. Unfortunately today character and America are oxymorons. People only think for themselves and not the greater good. We used to say, "United we stand, divided we fall," but you don't hear that much anymore.

    middle of the mit
    Wed, 04/29/2020 - 3:50am

    While I understand where you are coming from, you can't honestly believe these GOD fearing people care about anything more than money, do you? They don't.

    They tell us.

    So why should we?

    R.L.
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 9:43am

    Interesting comments on this subject. Programs for decades have been put in place that make it a disincentive to got to work. This large of a program to give laid off people will be paid for by all of us. Remember those unemployment checks will be taxable. R.L.

    Duh
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:53pm

    "Remember those unemployment checks will be taxable."...unlike the small business loans that will be forgiven. Taxes actually pay for stuff, so yeah, people should pay taxes and get benefits.

    Robert
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:06am

    This of course assumes that the money actually flows. My youngest son works in the restaurant business as a dishwasher. He was, per Executive Order, laid off on about March 19th. Although he filed for unemployment and is in "the system" with his debit card from the State, he has yet to see a single dime..... which includes the CARES $1,200 or the $600 supplement. Thankfully, he has his parents who provide him with food and will also most likely pay his car payment and mortgage payment for the moth of May. He had enough saved to get him March and April but now he's broke. I can assure you he'd much rather be working than depending upon the supposed largess of the State and Fed Government.

    Dream small
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:50pm

    Wow, a dishwasher can afford and qualify for a mortgage! His parents must have cosigned the loan. Too too bad the public transportation in Michigan sucks, then you wouldn't have to make his car payments.

    Robert
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 10:11am

    This of course assumes that the money actually flows. My youngest son works in the restaurant business as a dishwasher. He was, per Executive Order, laid off on about March 19th. Although he filed for unemployment and is in "the system" with his debit card from the State, he has yet to see a single dime..... which includes the CARES $1,200 or the $600 supplement. Thankfully, he has his parents who provide him with food and will also most likely pay his car payment and mortgage payment for the moth of May. He had enough saved to get him March and April but now he's broke. I can assure you he'd much rather be working than depending upon the supposed largess of the State and Fed Government.

    Paulette
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 11:00am

    plain and simple, if you are called back and don't go back your unemployment ends

    Got it
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 5:19pm

    So that's what's behind the GOP pressure to reopen too soon. They want to force employees back when it's still risky so they can do nonessential work. Makes sense now.

    Malarkey
    Sun, 05/03/2020 - 3:02am

    Again the dis-information is staggering. Hospitals have laid off thousands, because their 'elective' surgeries were not permissible during the hysteria. An orthopaedic surgeon has been laid off, do you think the paltry 900 a week is going to help him? The same with business owners who still have to pay their lease and utilities...I am convinced the Progs have no idea how an economy functions...do you pay your own bills? I've been out on my own for over 20 years now and if thought like you, I would be homeless

    Jeff
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 11:03am

    I'm going to lose 350 dollars a week when I go back to work, I'm a quality inspector at a small mom and pop shop. I worked my way up the ranks over the years, from one position to the next. I don't have a college degree to battle with a lot of the workforce in my field for the better pay. So no I'm not going to be happy about going to back to work.

    Merciless
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 5:23pm

    Well get used to it, in GOP world employees are all fungible, easily replaceable with lower paid more healthy versions. Use them until they need healthcare, then replace them, but make sure they only can get healthcare through their God awful deadend job.

    Anonymous
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:05pm

    What about the people that are still working and can't go on unemployment.
    And are not making any more,at a low wage job . There should be something in place for them .

    Anonymous
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:05pm

    What about the people that are still working and can't go on unemployment.
    And are not making any more,at a low wage job . There should be something in place for them .

    Mitchell Robinson
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 12:26pm

    How is this not about how little these companies are paying their employees?

    Exactly
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 5:28pm

    That's most of what this is about, but don't forget there is a dangerous pandemic and we WANT the people NOT to work, unless it's ESSENTIAL. But yeah, obviously ESSENTIAL workers are UNDERPAID. That's absolutely crazy.

    Suzanne
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 1:30pm

    I don't know where people get their wage info from, cuz I don't know anyone in the Bay area who makes $16/hr, it's more like $10-12. I work at a hospital and make $14, so I know that my coworkers who went to unemployment will do better than when our dept was open (if they get the CARES money). I on the other hand toughed it out, monitoring doors for the hospital, instead of taking unemployment. I scrambled to get my p/t hours, competing with others whose depts were also closed, so I could earn my $490 for two weeks work. Even the full-time girl I normally work with makes less than $500/week, so I'm sure she'll do better unemployed too. Maybe I shoulda gone that route instead of risking my health (or life) for my usual wage.

    No delusions
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 5:33pm

    What do you mean "take unemployment"? You have to be fired to get unemployment. You don't get to "go that route". Your employer has to fire you.

    Suzanne
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 7:39pm

    Where've you been? You don't have to be fired - just furloughed during this time of emergency. The rules changed. Everyone else in my dept applied for unemployment when we got shut down 4 weeks ago.

    Anonymous
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 10:06am

    Still your employer had to furlough you.

    erin davis
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 2:30pm

    Do you think what these companies are currently paying is a living wage? I'm looking for pro-worker articles about how they can actually survive on what they're being paid. There is no context of how much prices, bills and debt have been increasing while wages have been stagnant.
    The article fails to mention how many more people have money to actually go to the stores and restaurants complaining about this. It's not as if they are buying stocks with it. Maybe "trickle up" should be tried for a change as "trickle up" has been an abject failure.

    Agreed, Not a Greedy
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 5:37pm

    Amen, and I'm a middle class doctor. My business, clinic, lacks customers, patients, because most people are struggling, don't have money to spare. They have to decide between food and medicine. This is outrageous. America is shameful.

    Sam
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 2:42pm

    What about the people who are working and making less. It is unfair for the people who are working and not getting that $600 a week. The extra $600 should be for everyone. I am currently working and taking a 30% pay cut in my salary.

    You are Right
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 5:38pm

    Then quit and look for another job.

    Oldmichigander
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 3:43pm

    So raise the pay to an amount that makes it possible to live.... "a living wage"

    gshaw
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 4:07pm

    If a worker is called back to work and they decline, don't benefits end? So how is this newsworthy?

    Newsy
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 5:41pm

    That's just another reason why the shutdown should not end, first health then fairness. PPP never has to be paid back and it's for 2 1/2 months so let workers collect unemployment for 2 1/2 months.

    Ben W. Washburn
    Mon, 04/27/2020 - 7:24pm

    I'm amazed at the diversity of opinions regarding this story. I'm also amazed that no one, either in the story nor in the comments, appreciates the most basic reason that our Congress implemented this piece of "stimulus" legislation. Our overall economy is going to take a heavy hit from this pandemic. The point of this emergency stimulus is to instead "flatten that curve" by enabling many folks to keep paying their bills, that is, to keep the economy perking. There was no time and no administrative means to make it even seem equitable. But, without this "injection", the impact for almost everyone was going to become much worse. If you don't understand the content of this comment, please, please try to understand a whole lot more about what makes our economy perk! There are some useful and free on-line university courses on the internet, by which you could elevate your understanding and appreciation by which both our Democratic and Republican representatives did about the best that they could have possibly done under today's political divisions. Take a breathe. Most of the previous 90 comments could use it.

    Exactly
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 10:10am

    Unfortunately, this is a "bumper sticker" crowd, that only pretends to understand economics, not because they are dumb, but because they are cunning political hacks.

    Ted
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 8:11am

    Interesting article.
    My takeaway: An "Essential" business laid off 70% of their workers.
    My question: did Moran receive any PPP funds?
    I am not picking on Moran specifically but would like to see stats on the companies that laid off employees and still applied for the PPP.
    Maybe I misunderstood the intent of the PPP for businesses but I thought it was only for companies that kept their employees on the payroll?

    Matt
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 9:21am

    There was an extremely small window of time to apply for the loan. If you dont apply you wont get obviously. Nobody knows when their business will be allowed to reopen. Yes the money most be used to pay employees, but now businesses cannot get their employees back because of this idiotic, not thought out, bump to unemployment. So now none of my workers will come back. So we have this money but cant use it anyway. The amount of departments and organizations that have dropped the ball through all this is staggering. Scary to see our leaders makes such a fool of themselves.

    middle of the mit
    Wed, 04/29/2020 - 4:17am

    Matt,

    So you are an employer. And you still can't figure out how unemployment works? You are telling us and the world that you got your small business loan right here; " So we have this money but cant use it anyway".

    After you told us you laid off " In my industry employees are making double or more than they used to. Most are younger kids still living with their parents, part time workers that don't even NEED the money, being paid out as much as adults with families and mortgages. " employees?

    So what you are saying is that you laid off your employees and then and or at the same time applied for a loan to keep same employees OFF OF THE UNEMPLOYMENT SYSTEM?

    Sure sounds it like to me.

    Fire them. Then they will lose their unemployment and you can use the loan money for what it was intended. Or if you are a company that can be open hire them back, give the loan to someone that can use it, your employees will be forced to either return to work or lose the unemployment.

    It really is as simple as that. Unless you don't like liability......

    That is something the American business person is thinking long and hard about these days.

    I wonder why?

    Matt
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 9:24am

    In short, yes you misunderstood.

    Matt
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 8:32am

    How is this this first article I've found about this? How are people just now thinking about how ridiculous it is to over pay people on uia to this degree?!? Pay people what they made while working, that's fine. In my industry employees are making double or more than they used to. Most are younger kids still living with their parents, part time workers that don't even NEED the money, being paid out as much as adults with families and mortgages. Anyone who doesn't see a problem here, is one of the lazy pieces of crap that want to milk uia for all it's worth. We see you...

    John G -70
    Tue, 04/28/2020 - 11:06am

    The wages for steel fabrication or any heavy construction jobs are woefully inadequate. By the time they are 50 years old the majority have physical impairments that limit their ability to work . Spine /Neck damage / Lung damage from grinding dust ,inhalation of welding flux saw dust dry wall dust result in the[ work life]of these occupations to be limited. There is a vital need for floating retirement age that factors in the physicality and toxin exposure that a lot of industrial/ construction occupations involve! The majority of the people I know that worked in the heavy construction /industrial are dealing with physical difficulties that made some corporate entity a lot of money

    Anonymous
    Wed, 04/29/2020 - 1:35pm

    This is Great Depression 2.0 stuff. During the Great Depression, FDR would pay people to dig ditches. And then he'd pay other people to fill them in. He argued that he was creating wealth by doing so. These policies led to another decade of poverty and depression. Thankfully economics has advanced considerably as a study since then, and these ideas have been shown to be more harmful than good. I wonder why we're trying them again if they failed the first time.

    Leanna
    Wed, 04/29/2020 - 3:41pm

    Can someone explain to me how the laid off worker can refuse to return to work and stay on unemployment? It seems to me that they would then be quitting and would no longer be entitled to the benefit.

    Danielle
    Sat, 05/02/2020 - 1:37pm

    Sorry but haven't seen a cent from unemployment and last date worked was March 27th

    Tina
    Sun, 05/17/2020 - 10:36am

    This is so unfair people are getting more for unemployment than people who are working! Good luck getting anybody back to work before the extra 600 dollars runs out. People will stay unemployed till August.