“Failure to address this crisis threatens job recovery and the state’s recovery,” Smith said. Smith said it’s not fair for the government to ask businesses to pay additional money for a problem they did not create. Katherine Saint, president and CEO of Schwerdtle, Inc. in Bridgeport, said they paid well over $40,000 in additional unemployment taxes following the great recession.
Employers in Connecticut are still hurting after the government forced some of them to shut down for months. Many like Max Restaurant Group are working to get the last part of their business back up and running. “To date 24 states have used portions of their corona relief funds to either help pay for unemployment benefits or pay down the principal on the federal loans,” Dipentima said during a virtual press conference Wednesday.
“It would be the absolute worst time to allow a major issue such as the unemployment trust to go unresolved,” Scott Smith, vice president and chief operating officer of Max Restaurant Group, said. Dipentima said it took Connecticut businesses five years to pay off the $1 billion it borrowed during the Great Recession.
“Some people might retort and say we don’t need to deal with the unemployment fund, businesses have gotten enough, but what happened with that PPP loan 80% of that went off to keep employees hired,” House Republican Leader Vincent Candelora said. Candelora said the PPP loans helped retain employees but it didn’t help get the business back up and operating. “With the PPP money running out and diminished and lagging revenue, every dollar is going to matter to us for at least a few years,” Traub said.
Wendy Traub, chief financial officer of Torrington-based Hemlock Directional Boring, said they were shut down for eight months by the pandemic. “That’s a machine that we needed, that’s another person. It had a big impact at a point in time when we were very fragile,” Saint said.
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