State continues to lose jobs

Posted at: 05/19/2014 6:43 PM
By: Stuart Dyson, KOB Eyewitness News 4

The great job hemorrhage continues in New Mexico, and it’s even more painful because our state is all alone – still losing jobs while the other states in the Southwest region are growing.  New Mexico lost almost 6,000 jobs from April of 2013 to April 2014, according to the latest numbers from the U.S. Department of Labor.

There was chicken on the menu but it was all feathers for the economy as business and political leaders met for a power lunch Monday at Albuquerque’s uptown Marriott. The audience heard Mayor Richard Berry outline his plans for high-tech and digital job creation, including a new partnership with Microsoft that will result in a new “job incubator” somewhere in the UNM-Downtown corridor.

“We’re just trying to make Albuquerque a center of excellence so that people will invent here, they’ll create here, they’ll research here,” Berry said. “They’ll take that and we’ll commercialize it and then we can make it here and when you do that you build a broad spectrum of jobs.”

While New Mexico lost jobs in the last year, Texas was busy growing 348,000 of them. Arizona created 40,600, Nevada jobs were up by 44,700 and Utah increased 38,500. Oklahoma enjoyed job growth of 25,600 and Colorado grew 70,800 new jobs. Meanwhile, sad old New Mexico lost 5,900 jobs.

A big what-if to ponder: If Tesla does locate its huge new battery factory here, it would just about make up for the jobs lost in the last year, with a few left over. The state has lost about 32,000 jobs since the recession started here in 2008.