Williamson County’s number of unemployment claims grew by 1,523.63% year over year, according to Texas Workforce Commission data.

The data took into account the number of claims made each week from March 7 to May 2 in both 2019 and 2020. In that time in 2019, Williamson County saw 1,820 claims. That number jumped to 29,550 after the coronavirus pandemic forced many businesses to close for weeks on end, data shows.

The highest number of unemployment claims in Williamson County came during the week ending March 28 with 5,725. This was also the first full week the county’s “Stay Home Stay Safe” order took effect. During the same period in 2019, the highest number of claims was 250 in the week ending April 4.

Texas is seeing a similar rate of unemployment claim growth.

Between March 7 and May 2, 2019, TWC reported 117,941 unemployment claims. That number jumped to nearly 1.45 million during that same period in 2020, an increase of 1,128.61%.

Francisco Gomez, media and public relations specialist with the TWC, said Texas is reporting the highest number of claims it has ever seen, adding since the week ending March 14, the TWC has helped 2.1 million Texans apply for unemployment benefits and paid out $3.4 billion in benefits using state and federal funds.

He added claim processing is taking an average of 21 days.