Unemployment rate drops to 7.5 percent

Published 4:59 pm Friday, December 16, 2011

Chilton County’s unemployment rate dropped to 7.5 percent last month, down from October’s rate of 8 percent.

The jump mirrored statewide numbers that showed Alabama’s jobless rate fell last month from 9.3 percent in October to 8.7 percent.

Gov. Robert Bentley’s office announced the new numbers Friday.

“Every day we work hard to create jobs and put Alabamians back to work. That is exactly what is happening now in our state,” Bentley said. “November’s drop in the unemployment rate shows positive momentum needed at a time when our economy is struggling. We still have a long way to go before we reach full employment, but another month with a decrease in unemployment is certainly a good sign our economy is improving.”

This time last year Chilton County’s jobless rate stood at 9 percent.

Alabama Department of Industrial Relations Director Tom Surtees said jobs are being added steadily.

“For the past several months, we’ve seen our unemployment slowly decrease,” Surtees said. “We’re gaining jobs in Alabama — over 38,000 since January alone — and that’s always welcome news.”

Counties with the lowest unemployment rates were Shelby at 5.4 percent, Coffee at 6.2 percent and Pike at 6.6 percent.

Counties with the highest unemployment rates were Wilcox at 17.8 percent, Perry at 15.6 percent and Bullock at 15.5 percent.