AUGUSTA - The Maine Department of Labor today announced that there has been a delay in issuing unemployment benefits to some Maine workers this week due to a problem with the computer system that processes unemployment payments.
The problem halted processing of unemployment checks, direct deposits, and other notifications on Tuesday and Wednesday. Claimants who filed over the weekend or during the day Monday should have received payments as usual. Those who filed Monday night or later have had benefits delayed.
"The Office of Information Technology (OIT) has been working with our unemployment system staff around the clock since the problem was first discovered early Wednesday morning," said Commissioner of Labor Jeanne Paquette.
She added, "This time of year is when the numbers of people filing for unemployment peaks, so this delay is making a challenging situation even more difficult for many people. Our goal is to get this situation fixed as soon as possible to get benefits to people who are out of work."
Chief Information Officer Jim Smith emphasized, "Fixing this system is OIT's top priority. We have pulled in additional resources to get the affected servers up and running again. We hope to have the system back on line this afternoon."
Once the system is fixed, payments for Tuesday through Thursday's claims filings would be processed and sent to the bank that night and then forwarded through the bank's normal processing to debit cards or individuals' direct deposit accounts in their own banks.
The Department of Labor will post updates about the delay on its website, http://www.maine.gov/labor
BREWER - On January 22, 2014 at approximately 10:52pm, Brewer Police officers were dispatched to the area of a Wilson Street motel for a report of two people being held against their will.
The information provided to the officers was determined to be false. It was determined that no one was being threatened or held against their will and that the involved parties were not at the motel.
This investigation is on-going as police are trying to identify all involved persons. Criminal charges are anticipated. The Brewer Police Department was assisted by the Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office.