WASHINGTON — Today, United States Congresswoman Carolyn Bourdeaux (GA-07) led a letter to United States Department of Labor Acting Inspector General Larry Turner calling for a true audit of the Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) Unemployment Insurance claims processing and payment system. The letter was also signed by Senator Jon Ossoff (GA), Senator Reverend Raphael Warnock (GA), Congressman Sanford Bishop Jr. (GA-02), Congressman David Scott (GA-13), Congressman Hank Johnson (GA-04), Congresswoman Lucy McBath (GA-06), and Congresswoman Nikema Williams (GA-05).
This letter follows ongoing and prolific complaints by Georgians across the state regarding the performance of the Department of Labor in processing unemployment claims and distributing benefits. While, as of February, there were 400,000 Georgians currently receiving unemployment benefits, there were an estimated 180,000 whose applications remain in limbo. For too many Georgians, getting enrolled for benefits has required extensive efforts, including multiple months of emails and phone calls to the Georgia Department of Labor, as well as intervention by federal, state, and local elected officials.
“[M]embers of the Georgia General Assembly have contacted our offices about the ongoing issues, citing a ‘lack of transparency, discrepancies in data reported in press releases and on the website, and violations of federal statutes requiring timely payment of Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits,’” wrote the Members. “The breakdowns in the system are so egregious that we are requesting that your office perform a true audit of the Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) Unemployment Insurance claims processing and payment system.”
This request for an audit comes as the United States Department of Labor is set to receive $2 billion as part of the American Rescue Plan Act, a significant portion of which will be used to defray the costs of administration of unemployment insurance.
Rep. Carolyn Bourdeaux lives with her family in Suwanee, Georgia and represents Georgia’s 7th Congressional District in the 117th Congress. Carolyn is a strong advocate for affordable health care, an economic recovery that puts workers and small businesses first, and investing in her district’s world-class public education system and transportation infrastructure.
Georgia’s fast-changing 7th Congressional District includes portions of the northeast Atlanta metropolitan area, including portions of Forsyth and Gwinnett counties and cities Peachtree Corners, Berkeley Lake, Sugar Hill, Norcross, Cumming, Lawrenceville, Duluth, Snellville, Lilburn, Suwanee, Grayson, and Buford.