GOVERNMENT JOBS STILL DRIVING THE DECLINE, THOUGH
South Carolina’s unemployment rate dropped for the third straight month in November – but once again the decrease was fueled by the addition of thousands of government-funded jobs.
Of the 7,100 new jobs the state took credit for creating last month, 3,100 of them were government positions. Meanwhile another 1,200 new jobs were in the “education and health services” sector of the economy – which is fueled in large part by government subsidies.
Over the last three months South Carolina has added 24,700 new taxpayer-funded positions – helping drive its unemployment rate down from 9.1 to 8.3 percent. In addition to the 3,100 new government jobs created last month, the Palmetto State added 5,100 government jobs in October and 15,500 government positions in September.
Were it not for the addition of these government jobs, the state’s economy would have actually lost workers over the last three months. Meanwhile South Carolina’s “underemployment” rate – a broader, more accurate measure of joblessness – currently stands at 16.3 percent.
Given the rate at which state leaders have been spending tax dollars, it’s not surprising that the vast majority of job growth in the state is coming from the public sector. South Carolina’s “Republican-controlled” General Assembly has grown government by more than $3 billion over the last two years. Since taking office last January, S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley has approved all but $273 million out of $45 billion in state spending.