Will Kentucky meet July 31 goal to resolve 56,000 unemployment insurance claims?

Posted at 8:06 PM, Jul 20, 2020

FRANKFORT, Ky. (LEX 18) — Gov. Andy Beshear set his sights on a lofty goal last month: that, with the help of accounting firm, Ernst and Young, Kentucky would have all claims from March, April, and May resolved by July 31, equating to 56,000 resolved claims.

"The purpose is to get us caught up quickly," Gov. Beshear said in a press conference on June 30. "Not over 5 months, but this is designed to get us close to caught up in one month."

As of Saturday, the State said E&Y had processed "23,184 outstanding claims, and going forward expects to process approximately 4,500 claims each weekday and 1,500 on Saturday through the end of the contract."

After a claim is processed by E&Y, it still needs to receive a final adjudication from an Office of Unemployment Insurance staff person.

Despite learning about those numbers, people like Misty Guitan are not convinced the state will meet its goal of having all 56,000 claims fully resolved by the end of the month.

"I've seen people go to an appointment, get promised they're going to start getting paid, and they still haven't seen anything," Guitan, who's still struggling to receive the correct amount of money per UI paycheck, said. "It's a constant issue, so I don't have any hope for this new company coming in to fix our issues."

Joseph Ernest also said he was skeptical of the State reaching its goal because he said he had been to get in-person help in Frankfort twice but is still short one week of back pay.

"I don't think they'll get it done for me," Ernest said. "I believe I'm going to have to go back to an in-person meeting again for me to get it fixed."

Ernest said the money the State owes him is significant for his family.

"If I get that one week it would help me get caught back up to where I'm not struggling every day to try and make sure we got food or electric," Ernest said.

Ernest and Guitan both said, however, that for the sake of their families and others, that they hope they will be proved wrong and the State will meet its goal.