(AP) University of Georgia is preparing to file an application for unemployment benefits as the state prepares to extend the state’s unemployment benefits by two weeks, a move that could spur tens of thousands of jobless workers to apply for unemployment.
The university will file the new application in the coming weeks, spokeswoman Lisa Perna said Monday.
Georgia’s unemployment benefit application deadline will be July 3.
The state had been extending unemployment benefits from May 26 to July 3 because of the heat wave.
Georgia had a 6.1 percent unemployment rate last month.
The average increase since March was 3.7 percent.
The state’s Labor Department had said in February that it expected unemployment to remain below 5 percent through the summer.
It said that would allow the state to pay people up to $6,000 in benefits per month if they are unemployed through July.
The Labor Department said it could not comment on the specifics of the University of Florida’s case.
A large number of unemployed workers could be eligible for benefits, but the state and universities could decide whether to offer them.
Nathan Deal said in March that the state would offer unemployment benefits for six months, but he had said the state could only extend the benefit if unemployment remained at 5 percent.
Georgia and the state of Florida have been at odds over the unemployment benefit for years.
The federal government has refused to extend unemployment benefits, citing cost.
In April, Florida Gov.
Rick Scott called for Georgia to extend benefits to help keep its unemployment rate from reaching 5 percent and the governor, a Republican, later ordered the state unemployment agency to investigate a complaint of fraud involving some of its benefits.
Deal said last month that the government would provide unemployment benefits to those in the state who are eligible.
Georgia will not be able to provide unemployment benefit to those who are on the unemployment rolls, so those unemployed workers will not receive benefits.