Rock County jobless rates decline
Unemployment rates dropped in February in the Janesville area as well as in 22 state counties, the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development announced Wednesday.
However, the statewide unemployment rate edged up slightly and is higher than it was a year ago, according to department data.
The rate in the Janesville metropolitan area, including Beloit, was 12.7 percent in February. That’s down from 12.9 percent in January and from 13.3 percent a year ago, according to a news release from the department.
In the city of Janesville, the rate held steady at 13.1 percent between the two months. The city of Beloit’s rate dropped from 18.4 percent to 18.3 percent from January to February, the release states.
The data also included measurements by county. Rock County’s rates for January, February and a year ago matched those in Janesville.
Walworth County’s rate increased to 10.7 percent from 10.6 percent in January and from 9.8 percent in February 2009, according to the data.
Unemployment rates dropped in four of the state’s 12 measured metropolitan areas. Rates held steady in three of the 12 areas.
Across the state, the rate increased to 9.7 percent from 9.6 percent in January. The rate increased from 8.8 percent in February 2009, the release states.
Department of Workforce Development Secretary Roberta Gassman pointed to the rate drops in 22 Wisconsin counties, 12 cities and four of the 12 metropolitan statistical areas as proof of improvement in Wisconsin’s economy.
“These two months of data show that Wisconsin’s economy is stabilizing and we are moving toward recovery,” Gassman said. “We remain optimistic that Wisconsin’s economy will continue to show improvement, opening up greater employment opportunities for many hardworking families who have been out of work through no fault of their own.”