County’s unemployment rate drops under 7 percent

Published 3:26 pm Monday, April 18, 2011

By AMY JONES / Associate Editor

Both Shelby County and the state of Alabama saw drops in the unemployment rate in March. However, Shelby County’s rate dropped slightly more than the state’s.

Shelby County’s March unemployment rate was 6.7 percent, down from the February rate of 7.1 percent. Meanwhile, the state March unemployment rate was 9.2 percent, down slightly from the February rate of 9.3 percent.

Alabama Department of Industrial Relations Director Tom Surtees said the state’s unemployment rate was equal to more than 195,300 unemployed.

“A decrease in the unemployment rate is always better than an increase,” Surtees said in a press release. “However, we can’t get too excited because there are still nearly 200,000 Alabamians out of work.”

The counties with the lowest unemployment rates in March were Shelby, Coffee at 6.9 percent and both Madison and Pike counties at 7.5 percent.

The counties with the highest unemployment rates were Wilcox at 20 percent, Monroe at 16 percent and Perry at 15.8 percent.