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NC Chamber Supports Senate Bill 116 to Revitalize NC’s Workforce

In recent weeks, the NC Chamber has joined with many of our closest partners in the aligned business community to engage with state leaders and work toward an expedient resolution to the acute workforce challenges facing North Carolina’s job creators. On Wednesday, June 2, members of the N.C. House Finance Committee introduced a series of workforce solutions in an amended version of Senate Bill 116. Of special note for employers in our state, this new iteration of Senate Bill 116 includes a provision to end North Carolina’s dependence on Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) programs effective thirty days after the bill becomes law.

After our team considered the measures in the latest version of Senate Bill 116, NC Chamber President and CEO Gary Salamido released the following statement signaling the Chamber’s support of the bill:

“The NC Chamber fully supports the latest iteration of Senate Bill 116 in the N.C. General Assembly. It embodies recent efforts by both the House and Senate to provide workable solutions to our state’s acute workforce challenges, including solutions that seek to end our overreliance on federally enhanced unemployment programs and ensure businesses that already received COVID-related assistance funding to maintain their workforce can continue to receive targeted assistance. The latest iteration of Senate Bill 116 is the sensible, fair, expedient step toward workforce revitalization that North Carolina job creators and families need at this crucial moment for our economy.”

FPUC programs were structured for a very different moment in the pandemic when widespread shutdowns closed entire industries and forced many North Carolinians out of a job. As our economy shows signs of a rebound, many economists have noted that the continued reliance on these programs is likely a factor delaying a return to work for many individuals in state unemployment insurance (UI) systems. In our current environment, the NC Chamber believes our state’s UI programs are once again adequate to provide out-of-work North Carolinians with needed assistance while encouraging those who can work to return to the workforce quickly. Learn more