State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler is refusing to pay jobless benefits to seasonal workers like teachers and bus drivers despite an order from the federal government to do so.
Earlier this month, the U.S. Labor Department ruled that Georgia’s decision to deny unemployment benefits violated workplace laws.
State Labor Commissioner Butler has said that this is a “state’s issue” and that Georgia has the authority to write laws when it comes to unemployment.
The US Department of Labor has threatened to cut millions of dollars from Georgia’s unemployment program unless the state resumed the payments.
More than 64 thousand Georgians are classified as educational service workers—employees who lose work during the summer when school is out. State labor officials cut summer employment benefits to save money. Georgia already owes the federal government 740 million dollars in unemployment assistance.