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Chamber Director Voices Concern about Chronic Labor Shortage

May 24th, 2021 by WCBC Radio

The help wanted signs are everywhere. Companies are looking for workers in Allegany County with some offering more than the state’s minimum wage of $11.75 per hour. In Cumberland, employers, in a recent survey, identified finding people willing to work as their biggest issue in trying to bounce back from the pandemic. Without question, enhanced unemployment benefits are the main culprit in preventing people from returning to work.  Governor Larry Hogan’s recent decision to reinstate the pre-pandemic requirement that Marylanders who receive unemployment insurance benefits be actively searching for work- while viewed as a step in the right direction-  it falls short of what some other states have done in cutting off the federal benefits altogether.  Allegany County Chamber of Commerce executive director Julie McCoy tells WCBC News that although the organization has not yet taken an official position on the issue- the inability of local businesses to find employees is a concern…