After state’s first-of-year changes, unemployment rate declines again

RBC I After the Colorado’s Department of Labor and Employment (DOL) adjusted Rio Blanco County’s jobless rate between December 2014 and January 2015 from 4.9 percent to above 6.1 percent through a method of refiguring, the DOL stated, dating back to 1979, the county unemployment rate is again falling.

The DOL never did admit that the state unemployment figures were askew for 35 years, they just started issuing jobless rates in January that bore no resemblance to those issued in December. But from those figures in January, the months of April and May show a steady decrease, and the May figures, the latest available from the DOL, show a slight increase from the same month last year.
For May this year, the DOL reports the jobless rate of 5.3 percent, down from 5.9 percent in April and down when compared to May 2014, when the DOL reported an unemployment rate of 5.4 percent.
The DOL said that for March there were 2,922 persons available for employment, 2,766 actively employed and 156 who were jobless to reach the 5.3 percent unemployment rate reported.
In April of this year, the DOL reported 2,822 persons available in the workforce; 2,655 people who were employed, and there were 343 residents listed as jobless for a 5.9 percent unemployment rate.
In May 2014, the DOL stated that there were 3,121 residents in the available county workforce, there were 2,951 who were employed, and there were 170 who were unemployed, for a jobless rate of 5.4 percent.
In the state overall, the DOL says that this year’s May figures show an overall unemployment rate of 4.3 percent, a jobless rate of 4.4 in April of this year, and a jobless rate of 5.0 percent as of May 2014. The DOL May report stated that in May, there were 2,818,806 persons in the available work force; in April of this year that number was 2,810, 119; and in May of 2014, the number of available workers was 2,803,545.
Among the 64 counties in Colorado, Rio Blanco County was ranked the 23rd best county in Colorado with its unemployment rate.
There were three counties in Colorado listed among the non-seasonably adjusted counties with more than a 7 percent jobless rate. Tied for having the highest jobless rate in Colorado were San Miguel (county seat Telluride) and Huerfano (county seat Walsenburg) counties with a rate of 7.7 percent and Pitkin County (county seat Aspen) with 7.1 percent.
Also, according to the DOL, there were five Colorado counties in which the unemployment rate was less than 3 percent. Those were: Phillips County (Holyoke) at 2.4 percent, Dolores County (Dove Creek) at 2.5 percent, Baca County (Springfield) at 2.6 percent, Kit Carson County (Burlington) at 2.7 percent and Yuma County (Wray) at 2.9 percent.