Lawrence County Unemployment Rate Lowest in 23 Years


New unemployment figures released by the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development last week show that Lawrence County's unemployment rate decreased again in April from 5.2% to 4.1%, the lowest mark in almost 23 years. According to the State report, 150 Lawrence Countians found new employment in April.

April's unemployment rate of 4.1% represents the best rate Lawrence County has seen since May 1994, when the unemployment rate was also 4.1%. In January 2010 at the height of the national recession, the unemployment rate in Lawrence County peaked at 17.2% when 2,880 Lawrence Countians found themselves without a job. In April of this year, the number of Lawrence Countians unemployed was 730, the fewest in any month since May 1974. More importantly, 17,050 Lawrence Countians were employed in April, a number which has not been matched consistently in Lawrence County since the early 2000's before Murray-Ohio Manufacturing closed. 

County Executive TR Williams and Chairman Pro-Tempore Commissioner Chris Jackson said in a joint statement that the new county job numbers show a positive trend in economic growth. "By everyone working together and focusing on key issues like economic development, education and our infrastructure in a proactive and progressive manner, our county has dug out of the economic hole we had been in for years and we are now on a stronger path forward," they said. 

"While we all welcome these strong numbers, we know our job isn't over and county leaders won't stop until every middle class family is able to live, work and raise their family here in Lawrence County," they added.