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You wouldn’t know it by looking at our state’s 9.5% unemployment rate, but tens of thousands of new jobs were created in South Carolina last year … only to lie dormant as no workers were found to fill them.

In fact, over the last eighteen months, the number of unfilled jobs in the Palmetto State is roughly the same as the current number of individuals drawing unemployment benefits, according to job placement data obtained by FITS.

At the heart of this problem – not surprisingly – is the S.C. Employment Security Commission, which administers a massive job placement network that cost millions of taxpayer dollars to create (including individual offices with bureaucrats and staff in every S.C. county).

Sadly, though, this network is failing miserably when it comes to actually placing people in jobs.

Over the past eighteen months, the ESC’s “One-Stop” network has received 127,055 S.C. job orders – or open positions needing employees to fill them – but has filled only 57,250 (or 45.1%) of these positions.

Exactly 69,805 jobs have been left unfilled, which is interesting when you consider that there are exactly 68,071 people currently claiming unemployment insurance in South Carolina at the moment.

Also interesting is the fact that the network’s ability to fill jobs has declined the more desperate people’s employment situation has become.

Over the last six months, the “One-Stop” network has received 35,839 job orders but placed only 14,386 employees in those jobs, leaving 21,453 positions unfilled.

That’s only a 40.1% success rate, which like everything this agency does is completely unacceptable.

Frankly, the performance of ESC Executive Director Roosevelt Halley, his county-level bureaucrat brigade and the three former lawmakers who “oversee” this outdated, unaccountable and inefficient agency is worse than unacceptable, it’s pathetic.

Without putting too fine a point on it, they would rather absorb massive taxpayer debt via emergency federal loans (while proposing to triple employment taxes on businesses) than actually place people in jobs.

Sadly, that’s typical of the big government approach … keep ’em dumb, jobless and broke.

While the bureaucrats kick back in their spiffy new “employment security” buildings, of course.

WEB EXTRA:

Sample Of Job Placement Data (Jul-Dec 2008)