Governor Janet Mills' administration has announced a new program that will offer rewards for new hires.

The need for new employees is great all over Maine. You can't walk down the street without seeing multiple 'Help Wanted' and 'Now Hiring' signs. So the Mills' administration has come up with a program that they hope will encourage residents to return to the workforce.

Administered by the Maine Department of Labor and the Department of Economic and Community Development, the program will provide employers a one-time $1,500 payment for eligible workers who start jobs between June 15th and June 30th, or a $1,000 payment for eligible workers who start jobs in July. The first-come, first-served program will utilize $10 million in federal funding and could reach up to 7,500 Maine people.

Governor Janet Mills says now that vaccines are widely available and the state has opened back up, jobs are plentiful.

Employers across the state are looking to staff up, which means there are opportunities for everyone to work, earn a living and contribute to our state's economic recovery. With this new program, we are providing another tool to accelerate peoples' transition back into the workforce, protecting their health and their long-term financial stability.

In order to be eligible for the program, people must:

  • Have received unemployment compensation for the week ending May 29th, 2021.
  • Accept a full-time job that pays less than $25 per hour and remain on the job for a period of at least 8 consecutive weeks.
  • Not receive unemployment compensation during the 8-week period of employment.

Later this month, the Maine Department of Labor will launch an online portal on its website where businesses can confirm employees qualify and register their start dates. Once the employee has worked for 8 weeks, the employer will provide documentation of the completion of the requirement and grant funds will be issued to the employer to be given to the employee.

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