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Jobless rates stay low in Pa. counties

July 29, 1998|By DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - The low unemployment rates from Franklin and Fulton counties in Pennsylvania remained steady in June, according to preliminary figures released Monday by the state Department of Labor and Industry.

Franklin County's rate was unchanged from the 3.5 percent rate in May, the report said. The number of people listed as unemployed stayed at 2,300 for both months.

The total labor force fell by 200 people to 66,900, while the number of people listed as employed also was down by 200 to 64,600.

In Fulton County, the jobless rate dipped slightly from 3.1 percent in May to 3 percent in June. The May rate was the lowest recorded since the department started keeping individual statistics on that county in the mid-1980s, labor market analyst Larry Baugher said last month.

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All the numbers for Fulton County, which are rounded to the nearest hundred, remained unchanged. The labor force stayed at 6,800, the number of employed at 6,600 and the number of jobless at 200.

The number of nonagricultural jobs in the two counties was down by 1,000 in June to 55,200. The biggest drop was in local government, where employment fell from 4,600 to 4,000.

"It's the schools. The teachers are paid year-round, but the bus drivers, janitors, cafeteria people, many of them are on nine-month contracts," Baugher said.

Franklin County had the 11th-lowest jobless rate in Pennsylvania in June, according to Baugher. Fulton County was tied with Montgomery and Perry counties for the seventh-lowest rate in the state.

Baugher said Centre County had the state's lowest jobless rate at 2.4 percent. Pennsylvania's unemployment rate in June was 4.3 percent.

The national unemployment rate in June was 4.5 percent.

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