President-elect Joe Biden’s new stimulus proposal includes more financial help for unemployed workers, businesses and state governments — $350 billion for state and local governments and another $15 billion in grants to small businesses, as well as $1,400 stimulus checks for Americans.
The proposal includes plans to boost supplemental federal unemployment benefits to $400 a week through September. Under the current federal program unemployed workers are getting an extra $300 a week through mid-March.
Some New Jerseyans are still waiting for their extra federal benefits. The State labor department is now saying it hopes to process those payments over the weekend, after an unforeseen complication delayed the payments. Gov. Phil Murphy says eligible claimants should receive the funds next Tuesday.
The state is launching a new diversity initiative that focuses on the state contracting process. State Treasurer Elizabeth Maher Muoio says her department is undertaking a study to determine whether businesses owned by women, minorities and veterans are getting fair access to state contracts.
New Jersey businesses have been saying for some time that they are overburdened with regulations and red tape, but that may be changing. A bill advancing in the State House would set up a commission to look at whether any state rules or regulations are inefficient or unduly burden businesses and workers.