Indiana’s private sector added jobs for the fourth straight month in July, but the state’s unemployment rate remained at 8.4 percent.
July’s growth of 5,900 private sector jobs was significantly boosted by the Trade, Transportation and Utilities sector, which added nearly 11,000 jobs last month, which is the sector’s biggest single-month increase in more than 20 years.
Governor Mike Pence says while he is encouraged by continuing job growth, he’s frustrated by stubbornly high unemployment rates. He says his administration will redouble its efforts not just to build long-term economic success, but improve the immediate jobs picture.
“Our balanced budgets, our healthy reserves, low taxes, the fact that we’re Right to Work are all a contributing factor to the story that we can tell but I also will tell you that I think that our innovative and new efforts to bring career and vocational education as a priority to every high school in Indiana is starting to capture notice,” Pence says.
Pence says new Regional Works Councils, which will help develop curriculum for career and vocational ed programs, should be up and running soon.
In a statement, Indiana House Minority Leader Scott Pelath called Monday’s job numbers a “cause for despair” for the state’s middle class. Pelath says the state needs a new approach that focuses on middle class job creators.