MT. VERNON — Unemployment in Jefferson County for March dropped from 9.1 percent in February to 7.7 percent in March.
All counties in the area showed lower unemployment rates for the month, and the state rate also showed a decrease from 9.4 percent to 8.3 percent.
“[The] drop in the unemployment rate highlights significant progress in our state,” said Jay Rowell, director of the Illinois Department of Employment Security. “Our monthly numbers will continue to show uneven but measurable progress. Consumer confidence and its related spending remains a key driver of our economic growth, especially in construction and manufacturing.”
The county rate of 7.7 percent in March is also lower than the same
month last year when it was reported at 8.5 percent.
For surrounding counties, Franklin County still remains in the spot with the highest unemployment rate at 11.7 percent, however, that rate is still lower than reported in March, when it was at 13.3 percent. The March 2012 rate in Franklin County was at 12.5 percent.
Perry County comes in with the next highest, with 10.5 percent in March, down from 12.3 in February. The rate is also lower than a year ago, when it was at 11.6 percent.
Marion County unemployment is still in the double digits, with 10.1 percent in March, down from 11.8 in February. The county remains close to the rate in March 2013, when it was at 11.6 percent.
Hamilton County is also close to the same unemployment rate from a year ago, but down from a month ago, coming in with 8.8 percent in March, and 10.2 percent in February. The rate in March 2013 was at 8.7 percent.
Washington County continues to have the lowest unemployment in the area, with a 6.2 percent in March, down from 9.8 percent February, and down from 6.9 percent in March 2013.