PA Jobs Rise for Third Straight Month

Governor Rendell Says PA Jobs Rise for Third Consecutive Month; Recovery Act Continues to Boost Economy
Federal Action Needed to Maintain Economic Recovery

Harrisburg – The addition of 19,500 jobs in May marked the third consecutive month that Pennsylvania employers added workers boosting the nonfarm jobs1 count, Governor Edward G. Rendell said today. Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate2 at – 9.1 percent in May – has been at or below the national rate for 86 of the past 89 months.

“All told, over the past three months we have added 76,200 jobs – the most of any state besides Texas,” Governor Rendell said. “Our estimates are that a maximum of 20,000 of these workers were hired for temporary jobs with the Census. This means that we’ve added more than 56,000 jobs in the past three months in addition to these temporary Census jobs.

“There is more good news that 900 new manufacturing jobs were added in May. This is the fourth time in the past five months that we’ve seen an upward bump in manufacturing jobs.

“I strongly believe that our positive job numbers are due in large measure to the strategic ways in which we put the federal Recovery Act to work. And the good news is that the recovery’s greatest impact is yet to come; not behind us. This summer is actually poised to be the most active Recovery Act season yet, with tens of thousands of projects underway across the country and here in Pennsylvania.”

“But we need Congress to act – and act now – to preserve the progress we’ve made so far, and build upon it,” Governor Rendell added, urging Congress to pass the federal Tax Extenders Bill known as House Resolution 4213, which includes $850 in additional Medicaid funding for Pennsylvania.

The Governor’s budget proposal, along with the state budgets of 29 other states, assumes enactment of this extension. Forty-seven governors across the political spectrum have urged Congress to pass the extension and provide these much-needed funds.

“If Congress fails to act, we will be forced to implement deep budget cuts that would cost us up to 20,000 jobs, including health care and human services workers,
teachers, police and firefighters,” the Governor said. “The impact would be severe in terms of both job loss and the delivery of services.

“We’ve made too much progress and gained too much ground on the economic recovery for us to turn back now,” Governor Rendell said.

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