State Rep. Mark Fraizer (R-Newark) announces the Unemployment Compensation Modernization and Improvement Council has approved their recommendations report on how to help prepare and improve the state’s unemployment system moving forward. Fraizer has been a co-chair on the council since its inception earlier this year.
The council’s goal is a best in class unemployment system, one that is responsive to Ohio employees and employers while reducing waste, fraud and abuse. These recommendations are designed to cut red tape, improve user experience for claimants and employers, increase transparency, and make government more responsive so Ohioans can get answers to their questions and feel secure through the process of receiving benefits.
“It has always been the goal of this council to help constituents and build transparency for Ohioans navigating the unemployment system,” said Fraizer. “This initial report helps document the understanding and background compiled through the council for a better informed public.”
Last year amid the pandemic, Ohio’s unemployment system faced overwhelming calls and online requests from Ohio residents seeking unemployment benefits. Unfortunately, the system and software were unprepared for the massive increase in claims – extreme wait times, dropped calls, and other tedious technological deficiencies led to a failure in the state’s unemployment system.
This inspired Fraizer to serve as a joint sponsor of House Bill 614 in the previous General Assembly that was signed into law, which created the Unemployment Compensation Modernization and Improvement Council. Additionally, the bill required ODJFS to create and update a strategic staffing plan to more quickly react with the amount of incoming claims calls.
Over the course of the past six months and hearing from numerous constituents’ struggles with the unemployment system process, the council has dutifully held many meetings to solve these issues for the people of the state.
Key recommendations in the report to help improve the unemployment system that was approved by the council today include:
Key recommendations of the council include:
- Elevate the visibility and public understanding of unemployment compensation;
- Improve accuracy and efficiency in the claim process and authentication;
- Improve transparency and communications for Ohioans through ODJFS who have filed claims, including the ability to track in real time the status of those claims; and
- Bring together public and private sector leaders to continue to improve on the technology of Ohio’s unemployment system.
“We will continue to meet as a council and strive to create a system that meets the needs and expectations,” said Fraizer.