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New York State extends unemployment benefits for another 13 weeks

The state will make $600 payment to all who filed for unemployment, which will be reimbursed by the federal government.

ALBANY, N.Y. — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo confirmed Wednesday that New York State will make an additional $600 payment to all who filed for unemployment, which will be reimbursed by the federal government.

Under the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), states will administer the additional $600 weekly payment to certain eligible individuals who are receiving unemployment benefits.

The state will also extend the period covered by unemployment benefits for another 13 weeks, for a total of 39 weeks. 

Gianna Totaro lives in Buffalo, and she told 2 On Your Side that she has been trying to collect unemployment for two weeks after losing both of her jobs.

"It will offer me to put in my Social Security number and my PIN number to speak to someone, then you have that kind of glimmer of hope that you actually got through," Totaro said.

"But then it will kind of give you a voice recording saying we’re sorry, we’re overloaded with calls, and then it will just hang up on you."

Governor Andrew Cuomo's secretary, Melissa DeRosa, said Tuesday that the New York State Department of Labor has partnered with Google to bring a newly updated website for people trying to file for unemployment in New York State.

The new interface system should allow more people to sign up at one time, without crashing the website.

DeRosa said it should be ready by the middle of this week. 

The State Department of Labor has also hired more staff members to help answer calls. The department hired 300 more staff, which is in addition to the 700 staff already added earlier during this pandemic.

RELATED: NYS and Google create partnership to improve unemployment system

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