SC business owner reacts to end of pandemic unemployment assistance

South Carolina News

FLORENCE, S.C. (WBTW)– Starting this month, South Carolinians will no longer have access to federal pandemic unemployment assistance.

Since the pandemic started, more than 900,000 claims have been filed in the state. On June 27, only state unemployment insurance will be available. One local business owner said this is for the better.

“I think it’s the right move to take that extra money off the books,” Travis Miller said. “I think the jobs are there in the market.”

Miller co-own King Jefe and Tubb’s restaurants in Florence. He says the staffing shortage has not affected his restaurants as much as others, citing employee loyalty.

“We haven’t started anyone who works for us at $7.25 an hour,” Miller said. “I think paying people well and paying people what they’re worth is an important step to not lose people.”

Miller said kitchen staff are the hardest to keep on the payroll. He said there have been times when staff has been spread thin, but never to a breaking point.

“It makes it very difficult for us to function like we should when you’ve got all this business and you don’t have the staff to take it on,” Miller said.

He expects the end of the benefits to bring more workers in to apply. He said regular, solid pay is a more reliable way of getting and keeping employees than a signing bonus and low wages.

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