KIOS-FM

Nebraska Department of Labor

KMEG

Labor shortages that have plagued businesses across the country have also put the squeeze on Nebraska's state parks. The Lincoln Journal Star reports that has led officials to make the unprecedented move to cut hours and services at parks across the state. State parks administrator Jim Swenson says parks were already short-staffed this summer, operating with only an estimated 70% of their normal workforce. Now, with many seasonal workers headed back to school, parks are more short-staffed than ever.

Nebraska will extend its unemployment benefits for the first time in nearly 40 years in response to the mass layoffs triggered by the coronavirus pandemic. The Nebraska Department of Labor says it will provide up to an additional 13 weeks for eligible recipients who have exhausted their regular or pandemic unemployment benefits. The extended benefits were triggered when the state unemployment rate hit 5.2% during the week of June 14. Other states are offering similar extended benefits based on their unemployment rate.

The state of Nebraska once again broke the record for the most unemployment claims in one week. Labor Commissioner John Albin says 26-thousand-788 Nebraskans filed for unemployment last week, topping the previous week's mark of 24-thousand-572. Albin says his office has received as many claims in the last three weeks as in all of 2019. However, Albin says he believes the number of claims has peaked, and he expects to see a decline in filings going forward.

Lincoln Journal Star

Thirteen new cases of COVID-19 were reported in Nebraska yesterday, bringing the total number in the state to 81. New cases were reported by Sarpy and Douglas counties, and officials in Omaha say a police officer and firefighter have tested positive for the virus. The Omaha Police Department says the officer recently went out of state, and has self-isolated since he returned.