CELINA — The nine-county Lima region saw minor fluctuations in unemployment in September, with no discernable upward or downward trend, while the region continues to boast some of the lowest unemployment rates in the state.
Mercer County led Ohio with 2.8% unemployment in September — a modest increase over August’s 2.7% unemployment and April’s low of 1.9%, according to September data released by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services on Tuesday.
“It’s a nice problem to have,” said Jared Ebbing, director of Mercer County’s community and economic development office. “But it’s an issue when there’s hardly anybody left to fill the jobs.
“It comes with challenges. We have to work that much harder to make sure that our people know what jobs are available, our students in high school know how many great jobs are available and people from the surrounding area know the demand is here and the supply of people may be shorter.”
That’s a familiar story across the region, as unemployment has fallen to near 50-year lows, particularly in the spring of 2019.
“Unless something cataclysmic happens in the world economy or national economy, we see this being the trend in the foreseeable future,” Ebbing said.
Ohio’s unemployment rate rose 0.1 percentage points from August to 4.2% in September, according to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services. While the state’s private sector added 1,400 jobs in September, notable job losses occurred in construction (-1,700), manufacturing (-1,400) and educational and health services (-1,000), with another 2,900 public sector job losses in state, federal and local government.
Reach Mackenzi Klemann at 567-242-0456.