State lawmakers looking into jobless benefit delays
SACRAMENTO – Panicked Californians inundated the state’s unemployment agency with 20 times the normal volume of phone calls after a botched computer upgrade delayed jobless checks and crippled parts of the department’s website.
Call attempts surged after the Labor Day launch of a new system to process ongoing benefits claims. At its peak, nearly 6 million calls were made in just one week. The crush of calls was so heavy that people had to dial an average of 40 times just to get through to a recorded message.
These are among the key findings of a legislative report that detailed problems with the California Employment Development Department’s rollout of a $110-million software upgrade. The report will be at the heart of a hearing Wednesday in Sacramento in which state lawmakers will delve into the cause of the meltdown.
“It’s unbelievable how bad this is,” said Assemblyman Curt Hagman (R-Chino Hills)…
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