MONTPELIER, Vt. (WCAX) Frustrations over stalled unemployment claims in Vermont continue to mount. Wednesday, Gov. Phil Scott took responsibility and promised to do better.
Businesses like Green Mountain Monogram in Wells River were shut down by the stay-at-home order and 20 employees were laid off. Many are still waiting for unemployment checks.
It's a story we've heard time and again with more than 70,000 Vermonters trying to get benefits.
"I mean, I feel horrible for my employees. I wish there was something I could do. Going into week three, no unemployment. They can't get through, they can't get their claims filed. There are heating bills, there are mortgages to pay, there are car payments. There's food to put on the table and no income," said Gene Eastman of Green Mountain Monogram.
"It's not enough for me to say, have some patience because this isn't about patience. And I accept responsibility for this," said Scott, R-Vermont.
The labor commissioner says by Thursday they should have 25 new staff members to process claims on top of the 30 already added. They are working on the backlog from oldest to newest.
They are also making improvements to the self-service portal that they hope will clear much of the backlog in a matter of days.