Federal Government Shutdown 

Shutdown:  For Employees | For Clients

For Employees

This webpage will be updated as needed to provide information to ADH affected employees. 

Governor Beebe wrote a letter to state agencies October 9, 2013 letting them know that because the Federal Shutdown could be prolonged indefinitely the State of Arkansas does not have the resources to continue to cover the costs of federal programs. As a result ADH is currently reviewing all programs that receive federal funding to determine the impact to ADH employees and the clients they serve.  Most federally funded programs at ADH are on grant cycles that are not currently affected.

At this time, there is an agreement with USDA to provide ADH with funding that should continue the WIC program through the end of October.  This includes money for salaries for employees as well as checks for food.  ADH will continue to closely monitor WIC funding and redemption of food checks carefully. 
ADH is in the process of working with the Department of Finance and Administration (DFA) on possible short-term solutions.  Employees who will be impacted will be notified personally.  If an employee is unclear on the funding source for their position they should contact their supervisor.

Furloughed employees have asked if they will be eligible for unemployment.  Here is some helpful information.

You are considered unemployed during any week:

  1. You perform no services;
  2. No wages are payable to you, or if wages are payable to you for part-time work, the wages are less than 140% of your weekly benefits.  (The Department of Workforce Services can compute your weekly benefit.  The current maximum weekly benefit is $451.00.) 

The Arkansas Department of Workforce Services has posted specific information about furloughed state employees on its website. It is as follows:

Notice to Arkansas State Employees Furloughed as a Result of the Federal Government Shutdown

The Unemployment Insurance program provides protection against a loss of income during periods in which one is involuntarily unemployed and may be an option for state employees furloughed as a result of the federal government shutdown. Furloughed state employees seeking to file an unemployment insurance claim may do so by accessing the Department of Workforce Services EZARC (Easy Arkansas Claims) web-based application at www.ezarc.adws.arkansas.gov from any location via the Internet. Completing the Internet claim will take approximately 30 minutes.

Generally, individuals that have been furloughed due to the federal government shutdown and have earned wages between July 1, 2012 and September 30, 2013 will be able to file an unemployment insurance claim without having to physically report to a DWS local office. Once a claim is submitted through EZARC, the confirmation page will indicate whether there is a need to report to a DWS local office to complete the claim filing process. Individuals that are notified to report to a DWS local office should:

  • Report to a DWS local office on October 7, 2013 but no later than October 10, 2013; 
  • Bring a picture ID; and 
  • Bring a Social Security Card.

A valid waiting period week must be served before benefits can be paid. No unemployment insurance benefits will be paid during a valid waiting week. Please note that if retroactive payments are made to state employees impacted by the federal government shutdown, it could potentially result in an overpayment of unemployment insurance benefits for any benefits paid while on furlough.

For Clients

WIC - officials at the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) have reached an agreement with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) that would preserve benefits in the Women Infants and Children’s (WIC) program on a week-by-week basis. The commitment from USDA will allow ADH to continue issuing certifications and re-certifications without interruption this week and there will also be a reallocation of federal funds that should allow Arkansas to fund food checks at current levels on a weekly basis for the month of October. Funding will continue to be monitored very closely. 

This webpage will be updated with information for clients if changes occur.