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The Hogan Administration Announces Continued Low Unemployment Insurance Taxes in 2019

Employers Benefit from Lowest Possible Unemployment Insurance Tax Rates Allowed

BALTIMORE (Oct. 31, 2018) – For the fourth straight year, Maryland employers will receive the lowest possible unemployment insurance (UI) tax rates under state law, the Hogan administration announced today. The low tax rate has been made possible by Maryland’s low unemployment and high job growth, signs of Maryland’s positive economic state.

Since January 2015, Maryland has added more than 110,000 jobs, and UI claim filings – both total and initial filings – are the lowest they have been in the last 10 years. Benefits paid dropped nearly $37 million between fiscal year 2017 and fiscal year 2018. These factors have resulted in lower unemployment benefit payments, which have helped keep the rate at Table A.

“Over the last four years, our administration has worked to make Maryland a better place to live, work, and operate a business,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “Today, there are more Marylanders working and more businesses open than at any other time in our state’s history. We are steadfast in our commitment to creating greater economic opportunities throughout the state so our employers continue to have the strong, stable foundation they need to thrive, and will continue supporting initiatives that create more opportunities for our citizens.”

In 2019, the range of rates will be from 0.3 percent to 7.5 percent. The rate for new employers in 2019 will be 2.6 percent. Under Maryland law, an exception is the rate for new construction employers headquartered in another state, which will be 4.8 percent. The taxable wage base for 2019 will remain at $8,500.

“Under Governor Hogan’s leadership, Maryland has increased in strength and stability, with a growing economy that gives employers the foundation and security they need to succeed,” said Maryland Department of Labor Secretary Kelly M. Schulz. “The Department of Labor can help with that success, through the provision of innovative workforce programs, job training funds, and invaluable tax incentives and grant opportunities that will help drive growth by building and strengthening Maryland’s talent pipeline.”

Over the past four years, Maryland’s Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund has steadily increased. Since September 30, 2015, the fund has grown by more than $168 million to nearly $1.2 billion.

The Maryland Unemployment Insurance Program is financed by the Federal Unemployment Tax Act (FUTA) and is administered by the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation. As required by Maryland law, the Division of Unemployment Insurance does an annual “temperature check” on the Unemployment Insurance (UI) Trust Fund. This temperature check is made using the ending balance of the Trust Fund every September 30. The reconciled ending balance is compared to the taxable wage base for the preceding four quarters. That ratio determines the UI Rate Table for the next calendar year.

About the Maryland Department of Labor
The Maryland Department of Labor is committed to safeguarding and protecting Marylanders. We're proud to support the economic stability of the state by providing businesses, the workforce, and the consuming public with high-quality, customer-focused regulatory, employment, and training services. For updates and information, follow the Maryland Department of Labor on Twitter (@MD_Labor), Facebook and visit our website.

Theresa Blaner
Director, Communications and Media Relations
410-230-6241 (office)
443-721-8637 (cell)