SALEM, NH (CBS) – Tyler Thomas is in a tough spot at the Salem, New Hampshire pizza restaurant he manages. Business is back to pre-pandemic levels at Stachey’s, but he desperately needs help to meet the demand. “Prior to this I would get three to four applications a week, now it’s three to four a month. It’s tough to fill a lot of these hours,” said Thomas.
He’s not alone with “help wanted” signs just about everywhere. It’s one reason Governor Sununu wants to end the $300 a week enhanced federal benefit before it expires in September. He’s hoping to draw more people out and applying for jobs.READ MORE: 4 Your Community: Home Base Program
“Everyone deserves what they deserve, but we need people working for us too,” said Thomas.
Laura Hillard admits she’s making more in unemployment than she did at the warehouse shipping job she was laid off from. She wants to work again, but says the help that’s wanted doesn’t mean the job is for her. “Where you are in your career, what is available right now, there is a big disconnect with that,” said Hillard.
Business leaders in New Hampshire believe the governor should consider other uses for the money like incentives. “Why not use it to encourage people to go back to work with some type of job signing bonus or providing revenue to families like working mothers needing child care,” said David Juvet with the Business and Industry Association of New Hampshire.READ MORE: Coronavirus State Of Emergency Ends In New Hampshire
The state is also taking another step later this month, once again requiring anyone receiving unemployment to show they are looking for work, which was a pre-pandemic policy.
But Laura Hillard admits ending the extra benefit now makes her nervous. “Having that hang over your head definitely puts a strain on things,” she said.
As many business owners say the hunt for workers is making them anxious as well.MORE NEWS: Coronavirus In Massachusetts: Today's Developments
Governor Sununu has not set a timetable for ending the federal benefit, but says it will definitely be before September.