The state will begin sending unemployment checks this weekend to residents who were cut off during a Congressional stalemate over federal benefits extensions.

An estimated 70,000 Massachusetts residents lost benefits when Congress let the extension program expire on June 2. Lawmakers recently passed a new extension program, which means weekly checks averaging about $300 will start flowing again to the state’s long-term unemployed workers.

Joanne Goldstein, Secretary of the Massachusetts Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development, tells WBZ the office is working day and night to process checks as quickly as possible. Checks will start going out Saturday, and Goldstein expects the office to have processed 50,000 checks by Wednesday.

The unemployment rate in Massachusetts currently stands at 9%.

  1. Terry D says:

    What was the phone #Goldstein said to call? I wasn’t near anything to write it down when I heard the broadcast and I can’t get a live person to talk to at the main #.