Extra unemployment benefits not restored in Ohio

A Franklin County judge ruled Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine has the power to stop extra federal unemployment payments, denying an attempt to restore the weekly $300 payments that he stopped in late June.

Common Pleas Judge Michael J. Holbrook denied the request from former Ohio Attorney General Marc Dann for a temporary restraining order and a preliminary injunction that would have restored the benefits that the federal government plans to end on Labor Day.

“As with all the decisions to be made during the pandemic, this is not one that can be taken lightly. The Court is aware of, and sympathetic to, the thousands of Ohioans without work and in desperate need of any assistance available; however, the injuries suffered by said Ohioans, including the plaintiffs here, are but one element for the Court’s consideration on a motion for a preliminary injunction,” Holbrook wrote in his ruling. “Indeed, the Court simply cannot legislate from the bench.”

Business groups, including the Ohio Chamber of Commerce, filed briefs in support of ending the extra payments. They’ve argued the money deters unemployed Ohioans from seeking work as businesses throughout the state continue to struggle to find employees.

“We are pleased with the decision. We have heard over and over again from employers who can’t find workers to fill open positions, and this policy helps both employers and workers. Our administration has focused on opportunities to help Ohioans find quality, well-paying jobs. As a result of the tough decisions we have made, Ohio’s recovery is strong, unemployment claims are declining, and Ohio’s unemployment rate is below the national average,” Dewine and Lt. Gov. Jon Husted said in a joint statement.

Judges in Indiana and Maryland have ruled that those two states have to restart the extra benefits after governors halted them. In all, 26 states either have ended or will end the benefits before they officially expire. All but one of those states are led by Republican governors.

This article was originally posted on Extra unemployment benefits not restored in Ohio

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