For the week ending March 21, new unemployment filings in California soared 224% from the week before to almost 186,000 claims. On Wednesday, Governor Gavin Newsom said there have been over 1 million claims filed over the past two weeks. State labor officials do not break down county-by-county new weekly claims for jobless benefits. Because of the surge of laid-off workers applying for benefits, state labor officials are working overtime to process claims and encourage people to make jobless claims online.

At the federal level, Congress is negotiating a $2 trillion aid package — the Senate passed it late Wednesday and the House is expected to vote on it Friday — that’s expected to include hundreds of billions to boost unemployment benefits, $1,200 of direct

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