JERSEY CITY – U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics compiled during the first year of the administration of Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop show New Jersey's second-largest city has outpaced both the nation and state in reducing the unemployment rate, with a decline that doubles the national average, according to a press release issued by the Jersey City government. At 7.8 percent, Jersey City also has the lowest unemployment rate of any large city in New Jersey.
Figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor indicate that from June 2013 through June 2014, Jersey City’s unemployment rate dropped from 10.6 percent to 7.8 percent, representing a 2.8 percent decline, while New Jersey’s only dropped 1.8 percent during the same period and the nation’s unemployment rate fell 1.4 percent.
Jersey City has also closed the gap with neighboring New York City, as New York City had a 7.7 percent unemployment rate as of June 2014.
Contributing to Jersey City’s drop in unemployment is the administration’s focus on attracting new jobs to Jersey City, the press release claims. In the last 12 months, Jersey City added 1,565 new jobs to its economy, while in the 12 months prior only 706 jobs were added. Newark, by comparison, added only 1,061 during the same time period even though its population is greater, the press release states.
“Job creation has been a focus of this administration and something we approach from a variety of angles with every project,” said Mayor Fulop in a written statement. “We have encouraged development that creates jobs, expanded opportunities for youth employment and grown our employment and training program. Good jobs are at the center of all positive growth and we will continue to make this a priority as we develop Jersey City into a national model for job creation.”
The Jersey City government's statement regarding unemployment figures added that the city anticipates thousands of additional new jobs with the announcements by several firms that they are relocating to or opening facilities in Jersey City, such as JPMorgan Chase, RBC, Forbes, Imperial Bag, Nautica and Ahold, in the near future.
“The Chamber applauds Jersey City's efforts to attract new business and grow the local employment base,” said Maria Nieves, President and CEO of the Hudson County Chamber of Commerce, in a written statement. “The firms locating to the city bring not only new job opportunities but an existing employee base that will spend dollars at local businesses and help drive further growth and support this downward trend of the unemployment rate.”
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"In many ways, Fulop has embraced McGreevey’s granular-level approach to retail politics, racing around the state to raise money for congressional candidates in South Jersey one night, showing up at a Morris County Democratic Party function the next. His administration has also awarded legal work to Weiner Lesniak, the Parsippany-based firm run by state Sen. Ray Lesniak, the Union County Democratic Party power broker." - columnist Charles Stile- The Bergen Record
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