• 66°

Jobs numbers not to be taken lightly

It was recently reported that the unemployment rate in Chambers County rose slightly this past January, from 3.3 percent in December to 3.9 percent.

This is not good but a little more context is needed.

These numbers are in line with the rest of the state but if looked at seasonally then the numbers actually stayed the same or dropped slightly.

That being said we should make every available effort to ensure the jobless rate drops.

We are already doing much, between the various industrial efforts in the area and the ongoing growth of our downtowns but more could be done.

There are a number of ways to increase employment, from tax breaks and other financial incentives for hiring workers to businesses looking to hire more people.

The cities and county governments are likely doing everything they can to keep jobs here.

Good for them.

It’s the private businesses that really have to shoulder the burden of employment but with the recent announcement of delays from John Soules Foods, we have been made aware how tenuous our industrial prospects are at this moment.

The easiest thing done is for the various stores, restaurants and services in the Valley area to start hiring people.

This may sound naive but surely some of the businesses here could use an extra pair of hands or two.

Restaurants could always use someone the help cook or serve, especially considering the spring and summer months are just around the corner.

Stores could always use another cashier or stocker around and while it is only March, Christmas always sneaks up on us.

And service businesses could always use help, especially considering the likelihood of lines forming on busy days and no one wants to deal with a line.

In the end it is up to the people to decide if they want to put the effort in to keep jobs here. If they don’t, residents might just decide to visit LaGrange, Opelika and Auburn.