Excuse me, Governor Daugaard—did you drop this microphone? I think you forgot to give the jobs report….
Governing reports that 39 states reported job growth from December 2014 to January 2015. South Dakota was one of them… the least of them, posting a meager 0.02% job growth. Minnesota lost jobs in January at a rate of –0.28%… hmm… minimum wage hike coming to roost? Probably not, since states that approved minimum wage increases during 2014 are spread across that job-gain table. Minnesota’s job decline may better be explained as a predictable drop after higher-than-usual seasonal hiring. Every other adjoining state enjoyed higher job growth in January, from Iowa at 0.20% to Nebraska (also a minimum-wage raiser) at 0.47%.
From January 2014 to January 2015, South Dakota’s job growth rate was 0.7%, tied for third-lowest in the nation (with New Hampshire, Virginia, and Hawaii). All adjoining states beat us. Minnesota grew jobs by 1.0%.
[Feel free to review my data on this Google spreadsheet.]
Since Governor Dennis Daugaard took office, South Dakota has added just about 22,000 jobs. That’s a 5.44% job growth rate, 31st in the nation. We beat Wyoming (4.23%), but ever other adjoining state beat us, including Minnesota (6.85%) and North Dakota (no fair comparing the oil fields, but… 22.21%).
Hmm… the Governor’s Office of Economic Development tells us we have all these great rankings for our economic climate, but over Governor Daugaard’s tenure, our job creation as sunk from mediocre to nearly last place. What part of the equation are my fellow workers and I missing?