Twenty-five states added new construction jobs in August, the Associated General Contractors reported.
The number of states that increased construction employment over 12 months was the largest since October 2008.
“National construction employment has been flat since March, and more areas have seen an upturn in employment, while job losses in the remaining states are less severe than previously,” said Ken Simonson, chief economist for the AGC. “But the gains may be fleeting unless Congress and the administration enact long-term infrastructure funding bills before the current stimulus funds are exhausted.”
Simonson noted that the largest year-over-year increase was in New Hampshire, where construction employment rose 9.6 percent, followed by Oklahoma; Kansas; Washington, D.C.; and Arkansas.
The largest percentage job decrease compared to August 2009 was in Nevada, which was down 19.6 percent. Vermont, Idaho and Colorado all lost construction jobs. California lost the most jobs since August 2009.
Illinois gained the most jobs in August with 14,200 new jobs - a 7.7 percent increase, due in part to the end of a strike. Illinois gains were followed by Rhode Island and Oklahoma. Alaska had the largest monthly decline, losing 1,100 jobs, or 6.7 percent, followed by New Mexico and Minnesota.
“AGC urges Congress and the White House to finish work on long-term transportation and water infrastructure spending bills, and keep income tax rates from soaring to help the construction industry employment recover from millions of lost jobs,” said Stephen E. Sandherr, the association’s chief executive officer.