NASHVILLE - Marshall County's unemployment rate went down again, according to month after month figures released last week, but the rate remained second highest in the state.
With a workforce of 12,170, Marshall County's unemployment rate was 16.7 percent in May, down from 17.3 percent in April. Scott County had the state's highest unemployment rate at 19.8 percent, down from 20.2 percent.
The rate in Marshall County was as high as 20.3 percent this year. The figures are from the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development.
For three months in a row, Marshall's unemployment rate was the highest in the state. As a result, Gov. Phil Bredesen appropriated $3 million of federal economic stimulus money for a jobs program managed from the Career Center at Columbia State Community College in Lewisburg. The stimulus money pays wages and benefits for workers hired by local government and businesses. That funding continues through September. The Tennessee Department of Transportation opened 50 jobs to county residents.
Tennessee's unemployment rate for May was 10.4 percent, down one-tenth of a percentage point from the April rate of 10.5 percent. The national unemployment rate for May was 9.7 percent.
Lincoln County registered the state's lowest county unemployment rate at 6.6 percent, down from 7.1 percent in April.
Other counties near Marshall had unemployment drop thusly: Bedford, 12.2 percent to 12.1 percent; Maury, 15.3 percent to 15.1 percent; Giles, 14.2 percent to 13.5 percent; and Rutherford, 9.5 percent to 9.2 percent.