Extra $600 in unemployment ends July 31

An additional $600 for unemployment is about to run out. — Screenshot

The $600 weekly unemployment benefit that has been keeping many people financially afloat during the coronavirus pandemic is set to expire on July 31.

After millions of Americans began losing their jobs in March, the federal government passed the CARES Act, which included an extra $600 on top of unemployment benefits offered by states. 

Since April 20, 664,046 people in Massachusetts have filed for pandemic unemployment assistance, according to a press release from the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development.

From July 5 to July 11, Massachusetts had 23,535 individuals file for regular Unemployment Insurance (UI), a decrease of 3,084 over the previous week, and the fifth consecutive week of decline, according to the Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development.

Being a seasonal economy, Martha’s Vineyard has been particularly hard-hit. While hotels, restaurants, and retail stores have reopened, all are facing issues with staffing.

According to an economic model created by Applied Geographic Solutions (AGS), and a graphic map created by the Pioneer Institute of Public Policy Research based on that model, Dukes County’s unemployment rate as of July 11 is among the highest across the state, and is estimated to be 13.6 percent. This is a steep drop-off from the 26.6 percent in May.

This is also a drastic comparison to July 2019, when unemployment rates on the Island hovered around 3 to 4 percent.

More information on applying for benefits can be found at mass.gov/unemployment.


  1. Yippee Ends July 31st!!!!
    I know way over a dozen people who could have definitely gone back to work and they said No Way are you kidding me!! I’m making a fortune and got a hell of a tan!!
    I hope they don’t extend it which is still a possibility…

    • Way over a dozen?
      Did you actually talk to all of them or are you just going all Andrew on us and making up stats to fit your rants?

  2. Until they get the vaccine everyone is at risk. The 600 was incentive to stay at home. You cant open till you have a cure. Every resource we have should be put to finding one, never mind teargassing protesters. they are a drop in the bucket compared to the harm the virus is doing.

  3. OMG, never mind teargassing protesters? Makes no sense I suppose also Ignore the rioters and the tearing down of our historical statues?
    I wonder how many of those protesters / rioters were collecting $$$$ to stay home?
    Do you realize how long it could take for a possible cure?
    People cant follow the rules and guidelines, orders, mandates now like wear masks, use social distancing, self quarantine to help stop the spread and they cant even do that!
    Imagine if the schools closed our school kids would really be screwed up and look what this generation of young adults are doing, acting & thinking.
    Let the $600.00 expire and they will do their best to try to listen and start trying to help us in stopping the spread CV-19 virus.

    • TN did you object to the tearing down the historical statues to Hitler and Stalin?
      How about Mao?
      Traitors to the United States of America?
      Confederate Army ‘heroes’?

    • The way to stop the spread of Covid – 19 is to take off our masks and go back to school and work.

      • The fatalities are 80 per cent of those over 65. The other 20 is broken down in different age groups where 40-65 is around 8 decreasing to children under 10 that have almost zero chance of death from covid. So if you under 40 go back to work. Over 40 wait for the vaccine.

        • Are you saying that well over half of our teachers should not go back to work?
          What is the average age of a school bus driver?

          • Its a problem. 8 percent is better than 80 percent so It should be up to the individual. Presently they are making liability laws so govment and business dont get stuck with the cost of your hospital stay. Im in the 80 percent, havent even gone to a beach this year and I live next to one.

          • Have you gone to the grocery store?
            Used a cart?
            Found someone going the wrong down an isle?
            Grocery stores are dangerous.
            Beaches not so much.

  4. It was ridiculous from the get go (and I’m liberal). I’m ok with getting people at least close to whole but paying more than people were making didn’t make much sense. And it clearly was an incentive not to go back to work. Extend since we are in unprecedented times but lower the amount. We have to or there will be untold bankruptcies and evictions.

    • The $1200 one time and the $600 a week unemployment bonus were selected to maximize Trump’s vote count.
      Don’t forget that so much of the bonuses go straight into the coffers of Island businesses.

      • You’re making the same argument supply side repubs beat us over the head with: tax cuts give people more money which they spend and invigorate the economy and more than pay for themselves. It is categorically false. Although I don’t agree with paying people more than they were earning and I do think it has hurt rehiring, at least this is skewed towards the lower half for a change (which is why the repubs don’t want to continue it as is). They’ve been screwed enough (mostly by supply side economics).

    • What percentage of unemployment recipients receive more money from unemployment than they did working?
      I know two ferry boat divers who are still on the beach.
      Their unemployment is not 60% of what they were earning.
      (They are not the type of people who collect unemployment in the off season.)
      They also have families.
      Are they getting too much?

      • There have been a few analyses on this. University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business (one of the best b-schools in the nation) estimates about two-thirds of those receiving unemployment are making more than they were previously earning. The two people you cite above obviously would not be among those 66%.

        • They estimate? An estimate is another way of saying”I think” More opinion then fact.

          • Gee, I don’t agree at all. With that logic we should ignore all data modeling? Like modeling for climate warming change? Progression of covid-19? Etc, etc?
            I assume U of Chicago is using factual data to then make some reasonable estimates. We do know that the average benefits the states are paying is approximately $200 (yes this varies by state). Add $600/wk to that and we are talking about $800/wk. Per annum this is about $41k/year. $41k is quite close to the median wage in America. Obviously there are other variables but this would at least imply roughly 50% of those collecting are taking in more than they were earning. Then you overlay the fact that those earning less than $40/yr were disproportionately slammed by unemployment and you can see a reasonable estimate significantly surpassing 50%. Personally, I would then count benefits lost but also factor in unemployment aren’t subject to social security or medicare taxes. But I can assure you a prominent business school such as U of Chicago has done this and plenty more. They won’t get it down to the exact % but it seemed sane to me or I would have not posted. But if you don’t believe in data modeling then I guess my pov is moot. Most republicans don’t believe in a lot of modeling either hence the disbelief in human induced climate change and much of the covid 19 data.

        • Do you see the extra $600 as an incentive to isolate to slow the spread?
          So many of the unemployed work in direct contact with people.
          They do not have the option to work from home.

        • How much of the $600 goes into the pockets of people who otherwise would be unemployed?
          Economics is a tricky bit magic.

  5. As usual. We fight amongst ourselves while those who have no idea what it’s like to live paycheck to paycheck actually decide upon things. Ending the 600.00 payment just in time for the eviction moratorium to end sounds like a definite way for children to start out the school year properly.

  6. The $600 a week unemployment is a perfect example of trickle down economics.
    The stay at homes trickle their $600 a week down on to those who work every day.
    This $600 unemployment bonus is the best idea to come out of Washington since the Reagan Era.
    The employed should also get $600 a week.
    With all that money trickling down everyone will be rich.
    I missed my calling I should have been an economist.
    I would be rich.

  7. As President Lincoln so presciently said: A house divided against itself cannot stand. Perhaps the best use of our energies, at this juncture, is to prepare for that. We are so divided there is no coming together. And this is how it ends, not with a bang, but with a whimper….over and out.

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