Problems with distributing benefits to eligible unemployed claimants are persisting at the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE).
Gov. Polis previously blamed the department’s backlog on a poor system that his administration inherited.
Colorado was previously only one of 12 states in the nation to use an 80s-era coding language at the state unemployment office.
The influx of new claimants after Thanksgiving caused the antiquated system to crumble.
U.S. Sen. Hickenlooper failed to address the issue for eight years while he was governor, while Polis inexplicably waited until after his shutdown mandate sent the unemployment rate skyrocketing to finally update the system.
The labor department opened the updated system to claimants over the weekend, but that hasn’t solved all of the problems.
“Eight weeks later — we were looking up to this day and they have failed us. They have failed us big time,” said Leon Andrione, who hasn’t received PUA benefits since December.
Adrione said he’s struggling to put food on the table and keep a roof over his daughter’s heads.
“I’m still trying to reassure my children that they cannot go hungry. I mean, what am I supposed to do? Food does not fall from the sky,” Andrione said.
Technological issues with the supposedly improved system are still causing a host of issues, including:
Missing payments for the week of Dec. 27.
Issues with out-of-state identification.
Available Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) payments being denied on some claims.
Ineligible standard Unemployment Insurance claims still showing as the claim available to individuals, therefore not allowing them to to reopen PEUC or Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) claim.
Claimants not getting paid all of the backpay they are eligible for.
Polis is failing the state’s most vulnerable residents at a time of dire need, full stop.
He cannot continue to shirk responsibility for his monumental failure to cure the bureaucratic dysfunction that is plaguing the labor department.
People are hurting, and it’s past time that he stepped up and assumed some responsibility for the misery that he has inflicted on struggling families.