Saturday, May 25 2013 8:43 PM EDT2013-05-26 00:43:55 GMT
A Turner County man is now in custody after he had a standoff with deputies for about two hours Saturday evening. Sheriff Andy Hester says deputies were called to the home of Ricky Nelson on CoverdaleMore >>
A man had a standoff with Turner County deputies for about two hours Saturday evening.More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 6:27 PM EDT2013-05-25 22:27:57 GMT
Supporters of a 6-year-old Albany boy battling a serious brain disorder are coming together once more to help with his medical bills. This time, with a Vegas style event. This may seem like a regularMore >>
Supporters of a 6-year-old Albany boy battling a serious brain disorder are coming together once more to help with his medical bills. This time, with a Vegas style event.More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 4:52 PM EDT2013-05-25 20:52:02 GMT
A woman is recovering after her SUV was struck by another vehicle, flipping it several times. It happened around 3:15pm Saturday, near the 1500 block of U.S. Highway 19. Officials say John Earley wasMore >>
A woman is recovering after her SUV was struck by another vehicle, flipping it several times.More >>
Saturday, May 25 2013 7:30 AM EDT2013-05-25 11:30:07 GMT
Albany Engineer K. Bruce Maples, P. E. announced some road closures Thursday morning. Beginning at 6:00 A.M., Saturday, May 25, 2013, the following streets will be closed for the Spring Fest and SBMore >>
Albany Engineer K. Bruce Maples, announced some road closures beginning at 6:00 A.M., Saturday, May 25, 2013, in downtown Albany.More >>
Friday, May 24 2013 10:55 PM EDT2013-05-25 02:55:46 GMT
Not going out of town for Memorial Day? Don't worry, the Albany Panthers want to make sure you have a good weekend as they host their first ever beer fest. You can sample more than 20 types of beer SaturdayMore >>
Not going out of town for Memorial Day? Don't worry, the Albany Panthers want to make sure you have a good weekend as they host their first ever beer fest.More >>
ALBANY, GA (WALB) - A record number of Georgians are out of work right now. The statewide unemployment rate is 9.4-percent but it's much worse in many rural counties. One area county is bucking that trend.
While thousands of people fill unemployment offices in Georgia, it seems people in Lee County are staying employed. "Well that's good news for the residents of Lee County," said Lee County Economic Development Director Winston Oxford.
That's been the trend since Oxford started watching the numbers a few years ago. "Matter of fact, about two years ago, it was right at 3 percent," said Oxford.
We took a look at the unemployment numbers in Georgia county by county. Only a handful were below the 8-percent mark. It's impressive in these economic times that Oconee has a 6-percent unemployment rate. Lee and Long Counties are tied at 6.7 percent. Columbia and Harris aren't too far behind with 6.9 and 7.1 percents.
"It seems that all four of those counties are bedroom communities to surrounding counties," said Oxford. Oxford partly credits the low rate in Lee County to the fact that 85-percent of Lee County residents work in Dougherty or other counties.
"Another likeness of those four counties is that if you look at the educational data and the skill level of the folks that live in those counties, it far exceeds the levels of the average counties in the state," said Oxford.
Many rural counties aren't doing well. Jenkins is the highest at more than 21-percent and many Southwest Georgia counties have unemployment rates in the double digits. Both Ben Hill and Irwin are more than 15 percent followed closely by Turner, Cook and Decatur Counties.
Oxford expects Lee County to build on its commercial and manufacturing base so more than 15-percent of the county's growing population can actually work in the county. "The projected population in Lee County in 2022, 23, 24 will exceed 50,000," said Oxford.
The ideal goal is for the unemployment rate to stay low as those numbers grow.
More than half of Georgia's 159 counties now have unemployment rates higher than 10-percent.