STATEWIDE — The number of first-time unemployment claims in Maine was nearly 3,000 for the week ending July 4.
That’s a drop of nearly 1,000 people filing first-time benefit claims from the previous week, according to the Maine Department of Labor website.
A labor department statement issued Thursday morning said the total dollar amount paid to Mainers in state and federal benefits has topped $1.03 billion since the middle of March through the Fourth of July. The majority of the money was paid to people who lost their jobs while businesses closed due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions.
For comparison, the labor department statement pointed out $73 million dollars was paid in unemployment benefits for the whole of 2019.