Caught in the remnants of the recession, government agencies have scaled back their hiring, making the job search for prospective teachers — and police, clerks and code enforcement officers, to name a few — anything but assured.
On Thursday, the state said it lost 1,200 jobs in September — the result of a gain of 1,100 private-sector jobs and a loss of 2,300 public-sector jobs. A separate survey found the unemployment rate dipped to 9.8 percent from 9.9 percent.
The Press notes that the slowdown in public sector employment gives taxpayers some relief, but also slows down economic activity spurred by public employees with good jobs and money to spend. It points to NJPP’s recent report that found that public-sector cuts in the wake of the recession came precisely at the wrong time.
“Among its prescriptions: The federal government should provide financial assistance to state and local governments. But with the federal government facing its own budget problems, that’s not an easy policy to sell. It leaves public job seekers with little alternative than to wait for the private sector — and tax revenue — to pick up.”
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