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Stimulus update 2022: Direct payments worth $3,000 available for key workers

Washington Examiner logo Washington Examiner 8/17/2022 Jack Birle
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The portal for New York healthcare employers to register their workers for bonus payments worth up to $3,000 is now open.

The Health Care and Mental Hygiene Worker Bonus program, announced by Gov. Kathy Hochul earlier this month, aims to increase the state's healthcare workforce by 20% over the next five years.

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"Healthcare workers are the foundation of our medical system, and we need to acknowledge the sacrifices they have made to bring us through these challenging times," Hochul said. "Our bonus program is about more than just thanks, this is an investment in healthcare, and with it, we will retain, rebuild, and grow our healthcare workforce and ensure we deliver the highest quality care for New Yorkers."

The bonuses will be distributed to healthcare workers who make a salary of less than $150,000 a year and stay at their job for six consecutive months. Bonuses and overtime pay will not count in the state's calculation of yearly salary.

Employees can receive two payments over two vesting periods, with a maximum total of $3,000 or two payments of $1,500. Persons who have ever been suspended or excluded from Medicare are ineligible for the bonus program.

Bonus payments will be determined by the average number of hours worked per week for the vesting period. On average, those who work between 20 and 30 hours weekly can receive a $500 bonus, those who work between 30 and 35 hours per week can receive a $1,000 bonus, and if they work 35 hours or more, they can receive a $1,500 bonus.

Hochul's plan to boost the employment of healthcare workers comes nearly a year after the state began requiring healthcare workers to be vaccinated against COVID-19 under the leadership of former Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Hochul continued the mandate by announcing a booster would be required for workers in January, but she would walk back the booster requirement in March.

Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-NY), who is the Republican gubernatorial candidate in the state, has been critical of the program and of the vaccine mandate for healthcare workers.

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Employers can enroll their employees in the system at www.nysworkerbonus.com. Enrollment for the current vesting period ends Sept. 2.

 

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Tags: Money, New York, Stimulus, News, Economy

Original Author: Jack Birle

Original Location: Stimulus update 2022: Direct payments worth $3,000 available for key workers

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