With the economy taking hit after hit in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, it's great to know new jobs will be coming to Central Texas, even if we have to wait a bit.

Amazon announced today that it plans to build a 820,000 square foot fulfillment center in Pflugerville that is expected to generate about 1,000 full-time jobs. Minimum pay will start at $15 an hour with a 50% 401(k) match, medical, vision, and dental. They'll also offer 20 weeks of maternal and parental paid leave. Pretty sweet.

The facility's scheduled to open next year. Hopefully we're in a better place by then.

I think most Texans who've been laid off or had their hours reduced are eager to get back to work. We're hard-working people who take pride in what we do, and we appreciate the dignity of earning for ourselves and our families.

So many of our friends and neighbors are currently depending on unemployment benefits to make ends meet until they can get back to work or find a new job.

Right now is a tense time for them. KTRK reports that the federal unemployment benefit of an extra $600 per month is set to expire at the end of the month. That means the average Texan currently receiving both the federal benefit and state benefits for a total of $1,900 every two weeks would instead receive $700.

The House has voted to extend benefits, so it's now up to the Senate to approve or say nay. KTRK reports that Senator Ted Cruz is not in favor of the extension, but would like to see tax and regulatory reforms to benefit small businesses hiring or rehiring. Senator John Cornyn is reportedly in favor of another stimulus, including aid to health care workers and municipalities that have lost out on sales tax dollars.

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