LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- State officials recently said Kentucky had more than 80,000 unresolved unemployment claims, and some of those applicants doubt they'll see that money anytime soon.
In addition to a stimulus check that should come sometime in the new year, jobless Americans are expecting to get an additional $300 in unemployment. Dave Holstner, one of the thousands of unemployed Kentuckians struggling to make ends meet, can't wait for the help.
"It was kind of rough this holiday," Holstner said. "It's Christmas though so more about it than that."
Holstner said he filed for unemployment back in April after losing his job and was told he was eligible for about $500 a week, but since then, he has not seen a dime.
"I keep calling, and all I get is put in the que," he said. "They never call me back."
Holstner, who previously worked in maintenance, said he has been trying to find work but is having trouble, especially after his vehicle was repossessed after not being able to make payments.
"I mean, I've worked since I was 15," he said. "I think I've drawn unemployment for once in my life, and that was three weeks. So it's just kind of frustrating."
Holstner said he is happy to hear an additional weekly $300 dollars is on the way for the unemployed, but but questions if he will ever see it.
State leaders have said they expect to face hurdles getting the supplemental funds out with its outdated unemployment computer system. Once they get guidance from the U.S. Department of Labor, the benefit system will have to be reprogrammed.
The Kentucky Center for Economic Policy said that falls on top of the backlog of tens of thousands of Kentuckians still waiting on their benefits.
"We really let this system just be neglected for so long," said Jason Bailey, executive director of the Kentucky Center for Economic Policy. "I hope this crisis has helped us realize how important it is to have a modern up-to-date unemployment system that's fully staffed."
The Kentucky Labor Cabinet hasn't responded to a request for comment.
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