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Connecticut's COVID-19 “hero payments” to be sent out starting in February

UConn Health

Connecticut private sector employees who put themselves at risk in public-facing jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic will be receiving “hero payments” starting in February.

As the pandemic began to diminish last August, Connecticut created a Premium Pay Program that would provide up to $1,000 to frontline employees. The program is targeted at those who worked directly with the public during pandemic lockdowns or distancing periods in fields, such as schools, customer service, emergency response services and medical services.

The Connecticut Office of the State Comptroller is overseeing the program alongside the Public Consulting Group, which will assist with claim processing and payments.

The program was funded by an initial $30 million to support the critical workforce. That budget recently increased to $105 million in November.

Over 248,000 residents applied for the program before the Oct. 1 deadline, but only 156,000 residents were accepted. Of that 156,000, only 66,000 will be receiving a full $1,000 payment.

People who make $50,000 or less annually will receive $1,000, while those who made more than $50,000 will receive smaller payments.

Payments will be sent out in batches starting next month. The exact start date and schedule for the payments will be announced in the coming weeks.

Eric Warner is a news fellow at WSHU.