More on Government Jobs in Recession

The Rockefeller Institute of Government recently analyzed a Bureau of Labor Statistics report on jobs at this point in the recession. The report finds that with 9.2% unemployment, Pennsylvania is unsurprisingly keeping pace with the national rate of 9.5% unemployment.

Due to the skewed priorities of Pennsylvania’s government, the private sector is doing quite poorly, while the public sector is relatively stable. In fact, local government education jobs are up by 1% from 2009. Adding insult to injury, public sector employees are paid better than their private sector counterparts.

Though there has been only a 0.2% drop in private employment since last year, the statistics are bleak for the private sector in a climate that, with its high corporate tax, is adverse to business and job creation. In fact, the trend covers the entire Middle Atlantic region, which has seen a 0.2% increase in civilian unemployment since last June.

The most surprising chart (Figure 3) in the Rockefeller Institute’s analysis is that in recent recessions (except for 1980-82), government jobs increased significantly.