Minnesota scores $130 million in federal unemployment aid

Minnesota will get $130 million in federal stimulus money to help pay ease the state’s unemployment, the U.S. Labor Department said Wednesday.

The cash can be used to pay jobless benefits, provide employment services or to help pay for the running of the employment insurance program, the feds said. Here’s the MPR News story.

Minnesota’s unemployment is running at 8.2 percent, the highest in more than 25 years, although still below the 8.5 percent national rate.

One thing we haven’t looked at deeply is just how dramatically different the jobless rates run by county. March data showed a rate of 5.5 percent in Rock County in the far southwest corner of the state to a stunning 20.8 percent in Clearwater County in northwest Minnesota.

I’d love to hear from people around the state about their local employment situation. Is it getting worse or better? Are people getting the services they need? In past posts, we’ve highlighted the concerns of a lumber mill worker in northeast Minnesota and the view of a staffing expert in the Twin Cities struggling to find jobs for her clients.

Click here and tell us what the job market is like around you these days.

Below, we’ve mapped some other recent voices on jobs from our Public Insight Network. Take a look, then add your story.

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