Ala. unemployment rate dips slightly

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - Alabama's unemployment rate dipped for the first time since just before the tornadoes ravaged North Alabama in the Spring.

The rate for August came in at 9.9% unemployment for the state, compared to 10% for the month of July.

According to the Director of the Department of Industrial Relations, Tom Surtees, he says there are more jobs in Alabama as well as more people looking for work.

"The work force, how many people are seeking jobs has grown also and it has grown faster than the jobs have" Surtees said in an interview.

Since January, Alabama has added 28,000 new jobs. According to the press release from DIR, there are 213,412 people in Alabama without jobs, down from more than 215,000 the month before.

In regard to recovering from tornado damage, Surtees indicated it is crucial for the state to make sure hurt industries recover to retain jobs lost in April.

Surtees said he was happy to report that there has been an uptick in job searching activity in the state.

"We have more people employed now than we did at the beginning of the year" Surtees said. "More people working in Alabama in August and September than there were last January."

The counties with the highest rates of unemployment were Wilcox, Perry, and Dallas at 22.3%, 18.9% and 18.7% respectively.

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