Greater Minnesota isn’t looking so good

Published 8:47 am Thursday, September 25, 2008

Earlier this month, when all eyes were on the Republican Convention, the Pawlenty administration quietly released its second quarter report on job vacancies in Minnesota. No press releases. No press advisories.

No wonder.

According to an analysis of the report by the Jobs Now Coalition, Greater Minnesota now has 74,000 job seekers chasing 21,000 openings.

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Three and a half potential applicants per opening—that’s the largest gap since the survey began in 2000 (the ratio back then was one to one).

A quick look at the quality of the available jobs reveals equally troubling news for those job seekers hoping to earn a family supporting wage.

Of the eight occupational groups with the most openings, only one offers a median wage higher than $10 per hour.

Nearly half (47 percent) of the openings are part-time, which almost certainly means no benefits, including health care benefits.

Over two-thirds of the vacancies require no education or training beyond high school. And one out of four pay less than $7.50 per hour.

The Bible says we reap what we sow.

This grim news for Greater Minnesota is a direct result of Republican economic policies under George Bush.

Niel Ritchie

executive director

League of Rural Voters