Business Report: Unemployment benefits, Rutgers’ revenue crash, airline aid

Rutgers University reports an unprecedented collapse of revenues related to COVID-19

There were fewer newly unemployed workers in New Jersey in the latest week. The state says 23,600 workers filed for first-time jobless benefits in the past week, about 3,500 fewer than the previous week.

Some good news for residents who have been waiting for additional unemployment money through the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Lost Wages Assistance program: Those eligible for that benefit will receive a lump-sum payment of $1,800 later this month, according to Gov. Phil Murphy.

The board of governors at Rutgers University approved a revised $4.45 billion budget for the current fiscal year. The amended budget includes more than $86 million in restored state aid. The Rutgers spending plan reflects the economic realities of the pandemic. It includes wage freezes, furloughs and a halt on construction projects. Rutgers said it has experienced an unprecedented collapse of revenues related to COVID-19.

In Washington, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi ruled out the idea of a stand-alone bill providing more federal aid to airlines. President Donald Trump had suggested more money for airlines after halting talks on a larger economic stimulus package. But Rutgers-Camden Associate Professor Michael Hayes says a piecemeal approach to aid doesn’t make sense and that a larger stimulus package is needed.