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Athens Posts Positive Numbers in February for Jobs, Unemployment

The job numbers were looking good for Athens during the month of February, that’s according to figures released today by the Georgia labor Department. Commissioner Mark Butler says the unemployment rate dropped in the Classic City.

“We saw the unemployment rate drop by three-tenths of a point, bringing that rate down to 3.8 percent for the month of February.”

He says Athens produced strong numbers with improvements in jobs and employed residents.

“We did see the number of job increase by right around 500 more jobs in the month of February than we saw in January,” Butler said. “Not only that, but we saw our job seekers be successful in these new jobs as we saw almost 230 individuals actually gain employment.”

Athens did particularly well when it came to generating new jobs, both over the month and the year. However, Butler says Athens has lost nearly 1200 people in the labor force.

“The labor force number means the number of individuals either looking for work or currently working.”

He explains why that decrease poses a problem for Athens.

Department of Labor
Georgia Labor Commissioner Mark Butler.

“The reason why that’s a big concern is we’re showing over 1300 jobs active job listings in the last 30 to 45 days in the Athens area. We need to encourage more individuals to come off the sidelines because we do have a lot of jobs out there in the Athens area that need to be filled and if we want to continue to grow jobs we have to fill the jobs that we have.”

The four-county Metropolitan Statistical Area, or MSA, includes Clarke, Madison, Oconee and Oglethorpe counties.

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