September 30, 2013
The length of time an individual is eligible for unemployment insurance is quickly eroding. State governments are forced to reign in spending and control ballooning federal debts from unemployment insurance loans, and while the market is improving, some will find themselves without any income when benefits expire.
However, a select few unemployed individuals in Mississippi could be behind the desk of their own company before benefits dry up. The U.S. Department of Labor awarded the state of Mississippi more than $350,000 in grant money to develop a self-employment assistance program, according to local NBC affiliate WTVA. The Mississippi Department of Employment Security announced Wednesday that the program will rollout in early 2014 and is expected fund between 50 and 100 new businesses.
Instead of spending time searching for a new job – a frustrating and unrewarding task for many – some people receiving unemployment will work on creating a new business. Funding for the grant was made possible by the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012, and Mississippi is just one of several states developing such programs. Vermont recently received $49,329 in grants for its SEA program.
Program provides new opportunities, education
While the funding won't provide a large infusion of cash for a new business, the benefit of the grants is that workers can still receive some income while training to be re-employed. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the programs are aimed at individuals who have been permanently laid off and are deemed likely to exhaust their unemployment benefits before finding a new job. The program operates under the "teach a man to fish" mentality and offers some individuals the chance to realize a dream following the loss of a job.
State work search requirements are dropped for individuals in the program so that they may devote time to building their business. The program also allows time for entrepreneurial training and business education classes.
The funding is limited, and in Mississippi only 5 percent of individuals on unemployment can receive money through the program at one time. The MDES will monitor the new businesses and track any income they earn. Revenue generated through a new business will not be deducted from unemployment compensation.
Individuals who recently lost their job should contact their state's unemployment insurance agency immediately to learn if an SEA program is available.
In addition to their money-saving purpose on behalf of nonprofit organizations like AHS, First Nonprofit’s Nonprofit Unemployment Fund
streamlines the information we need to efficiently manage unemployment claims. Our relationship with NU Fund gave us access to such things as advice on planning for what’s ahead and how to analyze cost scenarios when unexpected events occurred. Both experiences were very helpful.
The Ensight Skills Center has enjoyed working with First Nonprofit for several years. We are enrolled in their Unemployment Savings Program and although we have not required a lot of intervention, there have been a few times. I know others have dealt with the same problem of unemployment fraud over the last year and in our case, a call to First Nonprofit (they actually answer their phones) cleared up the issue. They also sent us a letter to send to all our employees telling them what they needed to do to prevent this in the future and protect themselves. What a relief! Over the years if I have questions or concerns, they are happy to listen, advise and help if they can. Another BIG advantage of using First Nonprofit is that all the money that is paid into the Unemployment Savings Program lives on my balance sheet as an asset. The money continues to be Ensight’s not the governments. First Nonprofit has certainly given me peace of mind.
Visually Impaired Preschool Services has been a client of First Non-Profit since it was first offered as a benefit of VisionServe Alliance. We completed a thorough evaluation of cash savings to our agency before taking advantage of this wonderful benefit and it has been a very wise decision. Our experience with the processes from accounting to claims have been professional, expeditious and easy.
NYCON members who use First Nonprofit’s programs enjoy enduring savings and improved efficiency. Our association knows that success, because from the beginning, we achieved the same great benefits. Great savings, seamless technology, and responsive service. NYCON highly recommends First Nonprofit’s remarkable unemployment solutions.
It has been our sincere pleasure to maintain a strong, vibrant business partnership with First Nonprofit. We greatly admire their strong industry knowledge, technical expertise, constant professionalism, knowledgeable and dedicated staff. They are always extremely responsive, personable and provide us with the necessary guidance and recommendations on a numerous variety of employment scenarios. We
Because INCS advocates for the operating conditions that allow charter public schools to provide high quality public education, partnering with First Nonprofit was an easy decision. First Nonprofit’s unemployment programs provide our member schools two operating elements crucial to their ability to provide high quality public education: savings and budget certainty. Capable, committed teachers are the key to student success. By participating in the unemployment insurance savings plan, charter public schools gain peace of mind and are able to invest more money in their teachers.
Throughout our membership in the Unemployment Savings Program, First Nonprofit understood our demands, community dynamics, and the importance of seamless services; that allowed us to serve our constituents better.