Washoe County Judge Barry Breslow will decide this morning whether or not to order DETR to immediately pay thousands of self employed workers, independent contractors, and gig workers who have been waiting for weeks on end for PUA unemployment benefits under the CARES Act. A class action lawsuit was filed against DETR in June and the judge was supposed to render a decision two weeks ago. He instead appointed a Special Master, Reno based attorney Jason Guinasso, to look into what was going on at DETR and submit a report. Guinasso submitted his report on Friday, outlining deficiencies in the systems at DETR while recognizing that the agency does have to follow certain Dept. of Labor guidelines while processing claims. As Guinasso was submitting his report on Friday, DETR Deputy Director Dennis Perea abruptly resigned. His resignation is the third of a major DETR official since April, following the resignations of former director Tiffany Tyler-Garner and interim director Heather Korbulic, who resigned in June. The agency has been under fire ever since the Covid-19 pandemic has caused unemployment claims to skyrocket. Claimants, especially for PUA, report having to wait weeks for benefits, not being to able to get through on the phones to have questions answered or get help, or getting reps who don’t know the answers to questions and can’t really help at all with claims. Mark Thierman, the attorney for the claimants, says among other things that DETR is using potential fraud as an excuse to delay claims being paid. This morning’s hearing is at 9am and will broadcast or streamed over a number media platforms.
Born in New York City but also consider myself a native of Detroit. Attended college at Michigan State University. Started radio career in Detroit in 1980. Moved to Vegas in 1989. Worked 14 years at KCEP 88.1 before getting hired at Beasley with 105.7 in 2014.