Governor Larry Hogan held a press conference today to announce updates surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic in Maryland.
Governor Larry Hogan today announced that after detecting an unusual increase in out-of-state Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) claims, the Maryland Department of Labor discovered a massive fraud scheme totaling over $500 million. The Department is now working with the U.S. Attorney for the District of Maryland as well as the U.S. Department of Labor Office of the Inspector General on this investigation. This was followed by a reassurance that the Department has not experience a breach and personal information has not been compromised.
“I can assure you that nothing is going to stop us from continuing to help struggling Marylanders get the assistance that they need during this crisis” said Hogan as he stated that Labor has processed 96.4% of all claims.
Hogan also mentioned the letter to county leaders regarding public health requirements in bars and restaurants across the state saying the positivity rate among Marylanders under the age of 35 is rapidly increasing.
While local jurisdictions will continue to finalize their proposed plans in order to meet the August 14 deadline, Hogan reaffirmed that “we cannot and should not rush this decision. It is absolutely critical that we get it right for our communities and for each and every one of our children and our teachers.” The Superintendent of Schools, Karen Salmon, will join Hogan next week to provide an update on MSDE’s progress.
Stay tuned to Conduit Street for more information.