In an 18-page decision, Leon County Circuit Judge Layne Smith ruled that the State of Florida had the authority to end its participation in the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) program, which offered $300 in extra federal benefits to those eligible to receive unemployment compensation. In his decision, the Judge stated that the “Governor’s strategy to promote reemployment by ending Florida’s participation in the FPUC is a political issue” and that the state did not violate the state’s reemployment assistance statute (Chapter 443) by opting out of the program.
Florida continues to face a workforce crisis with more jobs looking for people than people looking for jobs (currently 545,200 open jobs in Florida, and 530,000 Floridians looking for work)
Florida had job openings increasing from 461,900 in April to 545,200 in July – an increase of 83,300 jobs, which is an 18.0% rise.
The FPUC program is scheduled to expire nationally on Monday, September 6th, 2021. It is highly likely that the 10 defendants, in this case, will appeal the case to the First District Court of Appeal in Tallahassee.