The Illinois Department of Employment Security announced yesterday the Jacksonville office is one of seven being closed as a result of mounting federal budget reductions.
A press release from IDES indicates they are nearly 100 percent federally funded and dropping unemployment claims are expected to reduce funding by $11 million. Although Congress reauthorized the Emergency Unemployment Compensation program, a $7 million reduction still is anticipated.
The press release indicates the offices closed were evaluated on several criteria, including work-load comparisons and lease considerations. Closings are expected in mid-March. Staff within IDES will be reduced by 192 positions.
To begin to address budget challenges, IDES already consolidated 10 offices.
The press release states the largest public impact is expected to be on those who prefer face-to-face meetings because they are not comfortable using technology, such as the internet.