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Georgia’s unemployment rate stays steady as the labor force climbs
Dept of Labor.jpg
The Georgia Department of Labor office is located at 2756 Atlanta Highway in Gainesville. - photo by Scott Rogers

Georgia’s labor force grew in August, and the unemployment rate stayed steadfast at 3.6 percent, according to the state’s labor department.

The state added to its labor force for the first time in six months with an influx of more than 20,000 jobs. Unemployment has dipped by 0.2 percent from August 2018, according to Georgia Department of Labor numbers released Thursday.

“August was the type of month I like to see for Georgia,” state Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said. “We gained ground across the board while setting records for jobs and employed residents. It was great to see the labor force growing again.”

Georgia has a new record of 4.64 million jobs. That’s nearly 85,000 more than the same time last year. The number of employed residents also rose. About 8,000 more people were hired in August of this year. 

Most of the jobs added to the labor force were in leisure, hospitality, education, health and financial activities. The news comes as Gov. Brian Kemp announced the construction of a new manufacturing facility in the state. 

Steel manufacturer RAI Industrial Fabricators LLC plans to build a new fabrication facility in Martin Bridge, Georgia.

“Georgia’s manufacturing industry has seen many wins in recent years, and we are proud that RAI is expanding their already successful operation into Martin Bridge,” Kemp said.

RAI’s headquarters are located in Athens, Georgia. The new facility in Martin Bridge is projected to add 30 new jobs to the labor force. The company will also pump $20 million into the state’s economy, Kemp said.

RAI would need to hire welders, fabricators, machine operators, detailers, material handlers, project managers, coating specialists and quality controllers.

Construction jobs across Georgia saw an increase of 11,200 in August.

“Right now, Georgia is looking very strong,” Butler said.

Kemp plans to tour GE Appliances’ Roper Corporation facility in LaFayette Friday. It is part of GE’s recent $130 million investment in the state.

In June, the company announced that it would be expanding its LaFayette facility and opening a new logistics center and a warehouse. The developments are expected to add 300 jobs.

“Thanks to corporate partners like GE Appliances, we are seeing greater investment and job growth in every part of our state,” Kemp said.

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