FRANKFORT, Ky. — Some state employees received unemployment benefits during the pandemic when they still had full-time jobs, according to a report obtained by Spectrum News through a records request Thursday.

What You Need To Know

  • Some state employees received unemployment benefits during the pandemic while they were still fully employed, according to the report

  • The governor said some employees have been fired

  • The investigation began last May

  • It is unclear if anyone is facing charges 

The report from the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet Office of Inspector General, first reported on by the Lexington Herald-Leader, said 19 state employees received state and federal unemployment funds totaling more than $54,000.


"Unacceptable," said Gov. Andy Beshear Thursday. "People taking advantage of their position and it was not OK and it denigrates the hard work of every other UI employee that showed up to do the right thing each and every day.” 

"Certain experienced OUI employees appear to have exploited known or perceived loopholes within the pandemic unemployment claims process to obtain monetary benefits for part time jobs, while still fully employed in and compensated for their state jobs," the report states.

Some improperly accessed their own claims and removed stops to obtain payment, according to the findings. It is not clear if anyone is facing charges.

"I don’t want to speculate, that’s not what you’re supposed to do when others may be looking at it, but certainly, if someone was not qualified for unemployment, knew they were not qualified and went in and got themselves unemployment, you could see how that could be a violation of the law," Beshear said. 

Beshear said he ordered the investigation that began last May and some employees have been fired.