Island County officials are obsessed with programs that increase tourist activities and their dollars. This is a waste of tax payer dollars and only results in increasing the number of seasonal poverty level jobs with no fringe benefits
Why are THEY ignoring the following information?
The following economic data were produced in 2010 and it showed a dismal picture of Island County’s future. Sad to say the economic data for county has worsened in the past 3+ years
Elected officials claim they have produced jobs but can’t show us where; especially jobs that are not associated with tourism and retailing.
It’s time to change direction and get off that tourism fantasy that they preach as being so good for our economy; BUT, the facts prove otherwise
Those jobs erode the average worker’s income and usually do not include the benefits package that full time employees are granted
Voters will soon be evaluating the real value of elected officials and decide to not vote for any candidate that will not show a specific plan for how they plan solve the employment problems of past years and it’s NOT more tourism or more tax paid government workers.
Ask yourselves, DOES THIS PICTURE OF ISLAND COUNTY PLEASE YOU?
As of May 2010, the unemployment rate in Island County was is 9.9%, but the official unemployment rate was significantly less than the actual unemployment rate. Many economists say that actual unemployment is about 16 – 17% for Washington.
In 2007, Island County averaged more than 15,800 jobs covered by unemployment insurance, of a total of 16,580 non-farm jobs.
In 2008, there were 33,340 Island County residents in the labor force, and 16,580 jobs in Island County, that means the off-island commuter ratio is about 50:50.
Those involved in the management of companies and enterprises have the highest income at $60,815,
Wholesale trade $41,877,
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation $14,161,
Accommodation and Food Services $12,903,
Goods-producing sectors 2,280 jobs in 2007, representing 13.8 percent of all jobs.
Construction was responsible for about 70% of all goods producing jobs. However, the 2008 data indicate, that 170 construction jobs were lost do to the recession
Manufacturing industry is virtually nonexistent in Island County. There were only 670 Manufacturing jobs in the county in 2007, and 50 Manufacturing jobs have been lost do to the recession.
Wholesale Trade industry accounted for 190 jobs during 2007. Employment has been stagnant in this industry since the mid-1990′s.
Retail Trade industry was at about 2540 in 2007; experiencing steady growth since 1990, but retail trade lost several jobs to the recession in 2008.
Information and Financial activities sector has been stagnant since 1992. In 2007, the employment in the industry fell to the 1990 level of 970.
Government services jobs has grown substantially over the last 17 years. Between 2011 and 2016, the annual rate of growth is expected to increase to 1.3 percent per year.
These data are several years old but the economy, jobs, and worker incomes have NOT improved one iota
WHAT’S THE FUTURE HOLD FOR US?
Without improved and a different approach in economic planning, this kind of job growth will continue to erode the average workers income and our poverty level will increase.
This must CHANGE!
We need zoning areas with street, utilities installed for light manufacturing and industrial kinds of jobs and regulations that make it easy for firms to do business in Island County. Look at what Anacortes has accomplished which proves Island County’s need for some attitude adjustments.
The cost expense for commuters time, money and energy off island is huge, both to the people commuting, and to the island; the economic reality is that commuter disposable income is often spent off island.