Unemployment Rate Drops

ST. MARYS — After edging up to start the year, the unemployment rate for Auglaize County in February decreased.

In data released by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, Auglaize County registered an unemployment rate of 5.8 percent, down from 6.2 percent in January. Last year, the unemployment rate sat at 6.8 percent.

“I think it’s good that they are going in the right direction,” St. Marys Development Manager Susan Crotty said. “It appears the decrease is fairly consistent across the state so I believe it’s most likely seasonal —  but since it did drop, I hope that means more of our citizens are finding employment.”

Working together with other communities has helped the region fair better than the rest of the state regarding employment, Crotty noted.

“We are more effective as a region than we are individually,” Crotty said. “Working with my Auglaize County partners and West Central Ohio partners helps us to be more effective in our marketing and reach a wider audience. That allows us to promote the area and to let people know what is positive around our region regarding business development.”

The rest of the region saw similar results. Mercer County, which has the lowest unemployment rate in the state, settled in at 4.8 percent, down from 5.2 percent in January. Allen County registered a rate of 8.3 percent (down from 9.1 percent), Shelby County was at 6.9 percent (down from 7.6 percent), Van Wert County was at 7.6 percent (down from 8.5 percent), Logan County was at 7 percent (down from 7.8 percent), Hardin County was at 7.6 percent (down from 8.3 percent) and Darke County was at 7.5 percent (down from 8.4 percent).

The statewide unemployment rate for February was 7 percent — which was unchanged from January.