Unemployment rates released by the state Department of Labor for January have soared in Jefferson and Lewis counties and St. Lawrence County hasnt gained any ground compared with January 2012.
From 2012, Jefferson County unemployment increased from 11.9 to 12.3 percent, Lewis County increased from 12.3 to 12.7 percent and St. Lawrence County posted the same rate at 12.1 percent. Lewis County is now tied with Oswego County for having the second highest rate of unemployment statewide, behind Bronx County at 13.4 percent.
January jobless figures also are up in the three counties compared with December: Jefferson County increased from 10.8 to 12.3 percent, Lewis County from 11.1 to 12.7 percent and St. Lawrence County from 10.1 to 12.1 percent.
The average jobless rate for non-metro counties in upstate New York which includes the north country jumped from 10.4 to 10.9 percent from January 2012 to 2013. Unemployment statewide increased from 9.1 to 9.4 percent over that time frame, while the nationwide rate dipped from 8.8 to 8.5 percent.