Gov. Riley reacts to positive employment numbers

MONTGOMERY – The state is experiencing a positive economic trend, Governor Bob Riley said of Friday's report that Alabama's unemployment rate has fallen for the third consecutive month.

"Our unemployment rate is at its lowest level since April 2009.  We've seen a decline for three straight months, and the number of Alabamians filing for first-time unemployment benefits is now below 2007 levels.  The trend we're seeing is positive, and with the new job announcements we've had recently, I believe that trend will stay positive unless Congress raises taxes," said Governor Riley.

A new report issued Thursday from the Congressional Budget Office says extending the tax cuts enacted by President Bush would help create jobs, Governor Riley pointed out. Those tax cuts are now set to expire Dec. 31.  The CBO said that extending the tax reductions and other tax measures "would knock nearly a full percentage point off the unemployment rate next year," according to a report in the McClatchy Newspapers.

"Congress has until Dec. 31 to act.  Raising taxes when the economy is struggling to recover is simply bad idea," said Governor Riley.

Some recent economic development announcements in Alabama include Lakeside Steel in Thomasville, Viper Motorcycle Company in Auburn, Raytheon Company Missile Systems in Huntsville, Hyundai Heavy Industries in Montgomery and the protection of jobs at Bush Hog in Selma.

Alabama's July unemployment rate fell to 9.7 percent, down from 10.3 percent in June.

INFORMATION SOURCE: Governor Riley's Press Office