New Jersey Job Growth
From the Daily Record:
Work is changing
Work is changing
Some records show that nineteenth century union leader Peter J. McGuire was the first to suggest a day honoring those "who from rude nature have delved and carved all the grandeur we behold."
Nowadays, so many of us who labor have little in contact with "rude nature."
Manufacturing jobs in New Jersey declined by 6,000 this year through July and overall private sector employment in the state rose by a mere three tenths of one percent during the same time period. Total private-sector employment in New Jersey -- at 3,433,000 jobs --is now only 3,000 jobs above the peak reached six and a half years ago, according to the New Jersey Business and Industry Association.
Where are jobs being created? The answer is in government.
Since December 2000, public-sector employment in New Jersey has expanded by a net 53,200 jobs, a 9 percent increase. Virtually all of that increase has been in state and local government; federal government employment has remained largely stable. Thus, over the last six and a half years, state and local governments have added more jobs than the private sector (a net gain of 53,200 vs. 3,000), and over the same period they have achieved a much higher rate of job growth (9 percent vs. one-tenth of a percent).
It is naturally better for people to have jobs than to be unemployed. Still, on this Labor Day, it is noteworthy that government expansions are responsible for more and more of the jobs New Jersey residents hold. That would be a mere economic footnote if not for the fact the state is in property tax crisis. Clearly, all of those public jobs -- and the generous benefits that accompany them -- need a lot of financial support. And a lot of that support is coming from property taxes.
It is a proper government function to provide services to people. Employees are needed to do that. At the same time, you wonder how long a state can be viable when government is creating so many more jobs than private industry is.