The “American Rescue Plan” extended the Federal boost to jobless benefits — and that extra $300 is the one thing that employers and their advocates point to as the major challenge. Gene Barr, President of the PA Chamber of Business and Industry saying: “It’s hindering our economic recovery and it’s something that we really have to address. It is not a problem in business as I’ve said it is a crisis in business.”
Help wanted signs are everywhere, wages are setting records – and yet – companies are struggling. LeAnn Boose, Business Office Manager at Boose Quality Castings saying: “We are really getting nobody.” Boose Quality Castings in Cornwall – pays around 17 bucks an hour to start – no degree required – and they train on site – but it’s not enough with over 25 jobs to fill – and applications trickling in. LeAnn Boose adding: “Very frustrating. Very frustrating. Our customers are upset, we are losing business because we can’t get workers and our employees are tired.”
Tired – upset – companies at a crossroads as they try and balance price increases on the back end and delays on the front end. Boose saying: “We used to, it took from when the order came in to when we finish it 8 to 12 weeks normally, right now we are running between 20 to 24 to get our customers products.”
The company believes boosted federal jobless benefits are to blame – and the PA Chamber of Business and Industry agrees, adding the crisis will continue if the Commonwealth doesn’t make a change. Barr adding: “Look, there are some childcare issues out there etc., our schools reopening in the Fall that should take care of that but there are far too many people about 40% of this Country who are making more unemployed than employed and this is not a case as I said earlier as wages being inadequate.