Department of Labor

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A new report finds that the number of people who receive Social Security Disability Insurance, or SSDI, due to mental illness has been increasing.

Vermont’s Department of Labor accidentally overcollected $26,000 in unemployment contributions from businesses across the state because of a rounding error coded into the state’s software in 2008, officials announced Thursday.

Gov. Phil Scott says his adminstration's plan for the Volkswagen settlement money will reduce harmful air emissions from automobiles. But environmental groups want assurances that the money will be used to electrify the state's transportation fleet.
Angela Evancie / VPR file

A massive security breach at the Vermont Department of Labor may have compromised the Social Security numbers of tens of thousands of Vermonters, and Gov. Phil Scott says the state is contemplating legal action against the private vendor responsible for the breach.

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The Vermont Department of Labor and the J. Warren & Lois McClure Foundation has updated its list of the top "high-pay, high-demand" jobs projected for Vermont over the next 10 years – and the educational requirements needed to obtain them.

State Auditor Doug Hoffer says shortcomings in project management at the Department of Buildings and General Services have led to cost overruns on major construction projects.
Peter Hirschfeld / VPR file

Hiring an employee is an expensive proposition. Workers' compensation, social security and other expenses can run thousands of dollars a year, so it's no surprise that companies often try to reduce expenses keeping workers off the payroll, calling them independent contractors instead.

But sometimes they do so in violation of state law. And in a new report, State Auditor Doug Hoffer says the state isn't doing enough to stop a practice known as "misclassification."

A Department of Labor employee has been fired for stealing personal data from the department's unemployment insurance system. According to a Department of Labor news release, the employee improperly had possession of 39 people's names and social security numbers.

In addition, the employee, who wasn't named in the release, had 41 social security numbers that weren't associated with names.

Vermont’s unemployment rate held steady at 3.3 percent in May, according to a new report from the Department of Labor, still 3 percent below the national unemployment average.

“By not declining, May 2014 data ends a streak of seven consecutive months of reported decreases to the statewide unemployment rate in Vermont,” the labor department report said.

Commissioner Annie Noonan noted in the report that the unchanged rate comes despite staff reductions at “several companies.” Those cuts, she said, were balanced by increased hiring at bigger companies.

The Vermont Department of Labor is scrambling to find alternative safety nets for 650 Vermonters who lost their federal unemployment benefits at the end of 2013. The state lost about $200,000 in weekly funding in federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation when the benefits expired at the end of last year.

Across the country, about 1.3 million Americans lost their unemployment benefits when the program expired at the end of 2013.