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Summer brings more jobs to area residents

June 25, 2004|by WANDA T. WILLIAMS

wandaw@herald-mail.com

Washington and Frederick counties in May continued to ride April's tide with another drop in the unemployment rate coupled with continued seasonal job growth, according to state labor figures released Thursday by the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation.

Washington County's unemployment rate in May was 3.5 percent and neighboring Frederick County's was 2.5 percent.

In April, Washington County's jobless rate dropped to 3.7 percent, down from 4.5 percent in March. Frederick's unemployment rate dropped to 2.6 in April down from 2.9 in March.

In May 2003, Washington County's rate was 4.4 percent and Frederick County's was 3 percent.

Western Maryland Job Service Director Shanon Wolf said Washington County's unemployment rate hasn't been at 3.5 percent since September 2001.

May also brought 1,143 more jobs, but the number of job seekers also climbed, Wolf said.

"While all that hiring was going on, another 1,073 people entered the work force looking for jobs," Wolf said.

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As was the case in April, she said most of the new jobs were seasonal mixed with a few nonseasonal jobs.

According to May's labor report, the number of unemployed people in Washington County decreased by 70, down from 2,579 in April. The number of unemployed dropped by 56 in Frederick County, down from 2,863.

What does this mean for job seekers?

"It's a good time to be looking for work, because they (employers) are hiring," Wolf said.

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