TRENTON – Noting data that shows New Jersey led the nation in new unemployment claims at the end of June, Senate Budget and Appropriations Chairman Paul Sarlo said the figures show that the administration’s fiscal policies are not stimulating the economy or creating new jobs.
According to numbers released by the US Department of Labor on Thursday, New Jersey jobless claims rose by 7,951 during the week of June 20 – 26, more than 3,300 higher than runner-up Massachusetts. New Jersey’s number was more than double that of third-place New York (3,473). Pennsylvania saw its jobless claims actually drop by more than 2,800.
The numbers were fueled by more losses in the construction, transportation and service industries and a spike in school-related job losses.
“These figures confirm my fear that nothing businesses heard during the three months of budget talk is garnering real traction to create new employment opportunities,” said Sarlo (D-Bergen). “Unless these trends reverse, New Jersey’s entire economy is going to continue to teeter on the edge of the precipice.”
Sarlo said he hopes the drop in construction jobs will spur the Governor to sign legislation he sponsored to create a new homebuyers tax credit to reawaken the moribund building industry. The bill, which passed the Legislature on June 20, has yet to be signed into law.
Sarlo expects another spike in new jobless claims over the coming few weeks as unemployment reports will reflect the layoff of temporary Census workers.
“This bumpy jobs ride is far from over,” said Sarlo. “I hope the administration’s new-found focus on promoting New Jersey as a place to do business is successful, and quickly. But right now, no amount of cheerleading can gloss over this devastating jobs report.”
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