Reduced hour workers qualify for PUA; Guam DOL just waiting for guidelines

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GDOL PUA processing center (PNC file photo)

Relief for workers with reduced hours has finally come.

The Guam Department of Labor received new guidance from its federal counterparts that workers with reduced hours now qualify for PUA.

Dave Dell’Isola, Guam DOL director, said: “Reduced hours are going to be allowed. Now, I haven’t…we have to wait for the total guidance on how, what, where, when..but you know, they heard us. And kudos to everybody that worked this hard.”

He added: “I’m just so thankful for all the hard work from our staff, putting all the reports and putting all the stuff together.”

The U.S. Department of Labor announced the update in a document issued Friday.

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Earlier this year, it was announced that workers with reduced hours don’t qualify for PUA.

It turned out this was also the case for the first round of PUA under the CARES Act.

Dell’Isola pushed back on that. Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero and Congressman Michael San Nicolas did as well.

San Nicolas and Dell’Isola did disagree on the best fix for the problem.

San Nicolas took this morning’s news as vindication of his take on the situation.

In a statement issued this morning, San Nicolas said: “As we have repeatedly asserted…this was not a problem with the law..as so alleged..but a problem with interpretation..and we are grateful to the Biden Administration for providing clarity in the midst of confusion.”

While speaking with Newstalk K57’s Patti Arroyo Friday morning, Dell’Isola said that although the island has received good news, he advised reduced-hour workers to hold off on applying for PUA.

“I’ll have more details on exactly how, what, where and when. So I’d just like to tell them on the island with reduced hours, please hold off until I get everything together, so I can advise how to apply all this stuff. But it looks like good news. And I just want to be careful, so that there’s no misunderstanding,” Dell’Isola said.

Dell’Isola said that he expects to receive more guidance on how to implement PUA for reduced-hour workers sometime next week.

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