The economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic has made a large dent in Kodiak’s employment sector.
In the month of April, Kodiak’s unemployment jumped to 10.6%, its highest month since 2009, and the highest April unemployment since 1994. A total of 584 unemployment claims were filed from Kodiak last month, the highest number of monthly claims since December 2013.
This news comes in the wake of startling job loss numbers recorded the state’s Department of Labor data released last Friday. The data indicates that 42,000 jobs were lost in Alaska in April, and the statewide unemployment average was 13.7%.
Even though Kodiak’s unemployment rate of 10.6% comes in below the state average, Kodiak has seen its unemployment claims double from 250 in March to 584 in April.
Kodiak’s February and March unemployment rates were some of the lowest the borough has ever seen. February posted a 4.4% unemployment rate, Kodiak’s lowest February in more than 30 years; March posted a 4.2% unemployment rate, Kodiak’s lowest March since 1991.
The state is responding to this economic impact by distributing $1.5 billion in federal economic aid for Alaskan communities, businesses, and industries impacted by COVID-19, and, as Governor Mike Dunleavy announced last week, PFDs of $1000 for each qualified Alaskan resident will be distributed July 1.