Panhandle unemployment lowest in state - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Panhandle unemployment lowest in state

Tom Pauken, Chairman of the Texas Workforce Commission Tom Pauken, Chairman of the Texas Workforce Commission

Tom Pauken, the Chairman of the Texas Workforce Commission says the Panhandle region has the lowest unemployment in the state.  Amarillo unemployment is at 4.1%.  Statewide it's 6.7% and 8.9% nationally.

Pauken attributes the low rate to the health of the agricultural industry, the oil and gas industry and commodities. 

Steve Amosson, Economist for the AgriLife Extension Service says in the 26 county area, nearly 13,500 employees are cumulatively making $16-million a year.

Pauken also says conservative fiscal policies by local independent banks has helped.

Pauken does not like the budget proposal issued recently by the Obama Administration.  He says as many as 100,000 oil and gas jobs could be lost in Texas.

Jason Herrick, President of the Pantera Energy Company agrees.  He says severe impacts can be expected if companies cannot expense drilling costs and have a depletion allowance.

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