By RORYE O’CONNOR
MT. VERNON —
Unemployment in Jefferson County came in at 8.2 percent in October, down .2 percent over September.
County unemployment figures for October were released Wednesday by the Illinois Department of Employment Security. Last week, statewide numbers were released showing a state unemployment rate of 8.8 percent, compared to the national rate at 7.9 percent.
Illinois added more than 4,800 jobs in October, according to IDES. The unemployment rate held at 8.8 percent for the second consecutive month, compared to one year ago, which was 10 percent.
“Job growth and an unemployment rate significantly lower than one year ago shows steady economic progress,” IDES Director Jay Rowell said. “Our eyes now turn toward Congress. Decisions must be made regarding the fiscal cliff so that Illinois’ economy can continue to recover.”
For Jefferson County, the unemployment rate in October of 8.2 percent was .7 percent less than in October 2011, when the rate was 8.9 percent. Of surrounding counties, four came in with lower unemployment rates — Washington, Hamilton, White and Wayne counties.
Washington County unemployment for October was at 6.6 percent, down from 7.2 percent in September and 7.3 percent in October 2011. Hamilton County unemployment came in at 6.7 percent, down from 7.1 percent in September and 8 percent in October 2011. White County’s unemployment rate in October was 7.2 percent, down from 7.4 percent in September and 8.3 percent in October 2011. Wayne County unemployment came in at 7.5 percent in October, compared to 7.7 percent in September and 8.6 percent in October 2011.
Three counties ranked higher than Jefferson in unemployment during October — Perry, Marion and Franklin counties.
Franklin County’s unemployment was by far the highest of the three at 11.1 percent, down from 11.3 percent in September and in October 2011.
Marion County’s October unemployment was the next-highest at 10.7 percent, down from 10.8 percent in September and 11 percent in October 2011.
Perry County showed a 10.5 percent unemployment rate in October, down from 10.8 percent in September, but up from 10.4 percent in October 2011.