Job Creation, The Private-Sector & Public Workers
Private-sector jobs have finally started to increased under President Obama, but at the local level we are losing public-sector jobs that provide vital services and boost our regional economies - especially in rural areas.
The following article points out that state, county and municipal budget cuts are remaking havoc on employment rates across the country. One solution? Protect public workers through collective bargaining - ensuring that they have a voice at the table when budgets are balanced, benefits are slashed and layoff notices are given.
Many local government workers in Oregon who had collective bargaining agreements found they were able to sit down with their coworkers and offer solutions that helped spare job cuts - like rolling furrows, time sharing, and other sacrifices that ensured jobs were maintained, services were maintained, and our local governments' long term goals could still be met even as budgets had to be cut.
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Private-Sector Jobs Bounce Back Under Obama
But Public-Sector Hemorrhaging Dampens the Picture
In the first year of President Barack Obama’s term, the country lost about 4.2 million private-sector jobs. But as of last month there are now more private-sector jobs in the United States than there were in January 2009, when President Obama took office. You read that right. Since bottoming out in early 2010, the country has added back 4.2 million private-sector jobs, and is now into positive territory for President Obama’s term.
Unfortunately, the news is not nearly so good when it comes to the public sector, where there are currently 607,000 fewer people working than there were when President Obama took office.
The chart below tells the whole story. Under President Obama, the private sector experienced a relatively robust recovery, and is now back to where it started when he took office. But due in large part to spending cuts at the state and local level, the public sector continues to shed jobs, and as a result, the overall jobs picture in the United States remains weak.
Keep this chart in mind the next time you hear someone rail about “big government” and complain about the slow pace of overall job creation.