Government & Politics

Kansas unemployment rate grows in July

The Kansas Department of Labor announced Friday that the state’s unemployment rate in July rose to 4.1 percent.
The Kansas Department of Labor announced Friday that the state’s unemployment rate in July rose to 4.1 percent. AP

Unemployment grew this summer in the Sunflower State.

The Kansas Department of Labor announced Friday that the state’s unemployment rate in July rose to 4.1 percent. Back in June, the unemployment rate was 3.8 percent.

In a statement announcing the numbers, Tyler Tenbrink, the senior labor economist for the labor department, pointed to the fact that growth in the Kansas City area wasn’t enough to offset the loss of jobs across the state. The department estimates that Kansas lost 5,600 jobs from June to July.

“The Kansas portion of the Kansas City metro area gained jobs over the month, however those gains were not large enough to keep the statewide area from reporting a loss in jobs from June,” Tenbrink said.

Nationally, the unemployment rate sits at 4.9 percent. The report from the state also notes that private sector jobs fell by 4,600 from June to July.

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback has maintained that his tax cuts would help businesses grow. Despite the revenue shortfalls and budget cuts that have followed, the governor has pointed to the state’s unemployment rate as a sign that the economy is strong.

Kansas has lost 4,500 jobs and 2,900 private sector jobs since July 2015, according to the report. The state’s unemployment is now the same as it was at this time last year.

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