Report: Maine's Unemployment Picture Mixed

Apr 1, 2014

A closer look at job growth and unemployment numbers paint a mixed picture of Maine's economic recovery from the great recession. 

That's according to a new report from the progressive Maine Center for Economic Policy, which indicates that, despite improvement in the statewide unemployment rate and growth in the number of Mainers with jobs, Maine's recovery is far from complete and is uneven based on age and geography. 

MECEP Executive Director Garrett Martin is one of the report's authors.

"And this is particularly the case in rural Maine and for people between 25 and 54 who are most likely to be raising kids.  It is true that we rank consistently near the bottom in terms of job growth. Maine has recovered about half the jobs we lost due to the recession and we rank forty-seventh among states and the District of Columbia in our return to pre-recession levels of employment," Martin says.

At the same time the report shows that Maine's older population has returned to work in greater numbers than in other states.  

Citing the report,  legislative Democrats say that, after four years,  Gov. Paul LePage's policies have left too many people behind.  Legislative Republicans charge that Democrats are using bogus numbers to score political points.