The unemployment rate has risen over the past year in 96 of Kentucky’s 120 counties.
Data from the Kentucky Office of Employment and Training shows that the statewide unemployment rate for November was up slightly over last year at 7.7%, with an increase of three-tenths of a percent.
Workforce Development Cabinet Economist Manoj Shanker says the increase reflects a particularly devastating year for Eastern Kentucky communities, which have the highest unemployment rates in Kentucky.
Originally published on Mon December 23, 2013 8:56 am
Kris Pirmann and a handful of other Johnson County residents stand outside the county commission office in Vienna, Ill., a town of about 1,400 people tucked into southern Illinois’ rolling hills near the Shawnee National Forest.
“Southern Illinois. I grew up as a Navy brat. I moved all over the place, and southern Illinois was always the place where family was that we could come back to as home,” Pirmann said.
Some Southern Illinois residents are concerned about hydraulic fracturing related water quality, chemical trade secrets and the size of fines levied on the industry.
The comments came from among the 175 present at an Illinois Department of Natural Resources’ public hearing on fracking last night at Rend Lake College in Ina. A six-member panel listened to a range of public comments about the IDNR’s proposed fracking regulations.
A Kentucky lawmaker thinks the legislature should consider some regulations on the disposal of wastes generated by hydraulic fracturing for natural gas.
State Senator Robin Webb said she’s especially concerned about the potential impact on groundwater. Webb said Kentucky doesn’t have any rules regarding the disposal of such wastes and companies involved in fracking are considering the Commonwealth to locate dump sites.
Supporters of high-volume oil and gas drilling say a bill to regulate the practice in Illinois is ready for a vote after last-minute negotiations over hiring and environmental concerns.
The House bill initially had strong support in February but stalled over an amendment requiring energy companies to hire Illinois-licensed water well drillers. Instead, companies will get a break on certain taxes if more than half their workers are from Illinois and receive prevailing wages.