Kentucky’s annual unemployment rate dropped to 4.9 percent in 2017 from 5.1 percent in 2016, while nonfarm employment gained 11,300 jobs, according to the Kentucky Center for Education and Workforce Statistics (KCEWS), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.

It was the lowest annual jobless rate for the state since 2000 when the rate was 4.2 percent.

The U.S. annual unemployment rate dropped to 4.4 percent in 2017 from 4.9 percent in 2016.

The Daily Item

AgTech Scientific plans to create 271 jobs at a new hemp-products development and manufacturing center in Paris as it forges relationships with Kentucky farmers and partners on research projects with the state’s flagship university, Gov. Matt Bevin announced.

The Levisa Lazer

Gov. Matt Bevin joined local officials and executives from EnerBlu Inc., a high-power energy-storage provider, in Pikeville to announce the company’s decision to locate its headquarters and manufacturing operations in Kentucky.

The company will invest $372 million and create 875 full-time jobs in Eastern Kentucky with the establishment of a production facility in Pikeville, and an additional $40 million and 110 jobs with the relocation of its headquarters to Lexington.

Penn Jersey Development

Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet Secretary Hal Heiner announced that Jessamine County has been certified as a Kentucky Work Ready Community. In addition, Bath County has been certified as a Kentucky Work Ready Community in Progress.

“I am excited to announce that we now have 38 counties that have achieved Work Ready Communities certification by the Kentucky Workforce Innovation Board (KWIB) and there are 50 counties in progress to become Work Ready Communities,” Heiner said.

Morehead State University

Are you a Morehead State University student, alum or community member and looking for full-time work, a part-time position or an internship? Are you considering graduate school or would you like to get your name out to employers?

If so, the Fall Career Fair at MSU may be the opportunity for which you have been searching.

The fair will be held in the Laughlin Health Building gym from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 3. Graduate programs and employers from a variety of fields will be in attendance, including both the private and public sectors.


Unemployment rates rose in 96 Kentucky counties between June 2016 and June 2017, fell in 20 and stayed the same in four counties, according to the Kentucky Office of Employment and Training, an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.  

Wright Concrete

Gov. Matt Bevin has announced that Wright-Mix Material Solutions LLC will invest $8.5 million in a production facility at the river port in Wurtland, creating 130 full-time jobs.

“By expanding into a new location in Greenup County, Wright-Mix will grow its parent company’s home-state economic impact and employment while reaching new customers across Kentucky’s borders,” Gov. Bevin said.

Roosevelt Institute

Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary April unemployment rate was 5.1 percent, according to the Office of Employment and Training (OET), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. The unemployment rate for April 2017 was up 0.1 percentage points from the 5 percent reported in March 2017.

The preliminary April 2017 jobless rate was 0.1 percentage points higher than the 5 percent rate recorded for the state in April 2016.

The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate for April 2017 was 4.4 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Public News Service

Last month, the Labor Cabinet recouped $107,614.90 in unpaid wages for Kentucky workers.

Unpaid overtime, withheld final paychecks, illegal deductions of pay and lower pay than the legal minimum wage requirement are among the types of wage and hour violations that the Cabinet prosecutes. Other examples include unpaid breaks, time-clock shaving, mandatory tip-pooling and prevailing wage violations.


  Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary unemployment rate was unchanged from November 2016 to December 2016 at 4.8 percent, according to the Office of Employment and Training (OET), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.

The preliminary December 2016 jobless rate was 0.9 percentage points lower than the 5.7 percent rate recorded for the state in December 2015.

The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate for December 2016 was 4.7 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. 


MACA Plastics, which supplies components to the automotive and medical industries, will locate a 156-job manufacturing plant in Maysville with a $7.9 million investment, Gov. Matt Bevin announced today.


Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary unemployment rate for September 2016 was 5 percent from a revised 4.9 percent in August 2016, according to the Office of Employment and Training (OET), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.

The preliminary September 2016 jobless rate was 0.4 percentage points lower than the 5.4 percent rate recorded for the state in September 2015.

The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate for September 2016 was 5 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Jobs and Wages: Kentucky's Latest Trends

Oct 18, 2016
Reliable Plant

In the aggregate, data show that the American economy has made significant strides in recovering from the depths of the Great Recession.

Kentucky as a whole has shared in those gains, but whether specific individuals have benefited largely depends on where they live in the commonwealth and the type of work they do.

Morehead State University

Morehead State University’s Fall Career Fair will be held Tuesday, Oct. 4, in the Laughlin Health Building from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

MSU’s Career Services invites employers and graduate programs to campus to recruit students and alumni for openings in their company or organization.

Attendees are seeking full-time and part-time jobs, internships and seasonal positions.

Details and registration are online at: http://www.moreheadstate.edu/career/postatmsu

Employer registration is open through Sept. 2.

Morehead State University

Morehead State University Center for Regional Engagement, East Kentucky Small Business Development Center and the Kentucky Innovation Network will host the 29th East Kentucky Leadership Conference April 28-29 at the Morehead Conference Center.

The theme for this year’s conference is “The Next Big Thing is Really Small.” MSU’s program developing “really small” micro-satellites will be featured along with other technological drivers of the new economy developing in Eastern Kentucky.

KY Forward

Executives from Superior Composites Co. LLC joined state economic development and local officials in Vanceburg this week to mark the start of a $2.5 million expansion. It is expected to create 32 new full-time jobs at the company’s glass reinforcements production facility.

The project comes less than a year after Superior Composites was spun off as an independent business and will position the company for long-term growth. The plant produces continuous filament glass fiber reinforcements and veils used in a variety of markets in the global composites industry.


Unemployment rates rose in 109 Kentucky counties between December 2014 and December 2015, fell in six counties and remained the same in five, according to the Kentucky Office of Employment and Training, an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.   

Woodford County recorded the lowest jobless rate in the Commonwealth at 3.5 percent.  It was followed by Oldham County, 3.8 percent; Fayette and Spencer counties, 3.9 percent each; Shelby County, 4.1 percent; and Boone, Campbell, Jessamine, Madison, Scott and Warren counties, 4.3 percent each.

AK Steel Plans Job Cuts

Dec 16, 2015
Creative Commons

More than 600 people will be laid off Christmas week at AK Steel’s Ashland Works, according to United Steelworkers Local 1865 President Scott Conley.

AK blames the furloughs on what it says are unfairly traded imports from countries like China. Conley says all the company and union can do is call on Congress to level the playing field.

AK says it will not shut down the entire Ashland plant but it will idle the blast furnace and related operations. The local mill employs about a thousand workers.

Finding Money for Kentucky's Public Employee Pensions

Dec 16, 2015
Personal Money Service

What caused Kentucky’s public pension crisis? That’s easy: Insufficient state contributions to the systems in recent years, lower than expected investment returns, fewer current employees paying into the plans, cost-of-living adjustments that weren’t prefunded, etc., etc.

What can be done to fix the public employees and teacher retirement systems? That’s also easy: Pump hundreds of millions of dollars into the plans.

Where’s that money going to come from?

Iron Village Welders

A union official has told Kentucky lawmakers a former construction company that worked on public projects all over the Commonwealth used employees with falsified welding certificates.

Bill Woodward is president of the Iron Workers Southern Ohio and Vicinity District, which represents members in Kentucky, Ohio, Indiana and West Virginia.

Woodward claims one of the projects done by Lamar Construction of Michigan had disastrous consequences for McCracken County High School.

South Carolina Aerospace

The president of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS) says it needs to do a better job explaining the value of technical and vocational training to younger students.

Dr. Jay Box made the comment during a press conference in Morehead on Tuesday (March 31). It followed a public forum during which he listened to civic and business leaders offer their views on what they think the future focus of the system should be.       


Kentucky’s annual unemployment rate plunged to 6.5 percent in 2014 from 8 percent in 2013, while nonfarm employment gained 29,000 jobs, according to the Office of Employment and Training (OET), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. It was the lowest annual jobless rate for the state since 2008 when it was a pre-recession 6.4 percent.


The Kentucky State Board on Electric Generation and Transmission Siting has granted a construction certificate for an electric generating plant and associated electric transmission line at a planned coke plant in northern Greenup County.

SunCoke Energy South Shore LLC, of Lisle, Illinois, intends to construct a 90-megawatt (MW) plant in conjunction with a coke plant to be built on about 250 acres along the Ohio River 2 miles northeast of the city of South Shore. The site is currently in agricultural use, but is near other industrial facilities.

KY Workers Comp Costs Decline

Sep 24, 2014

Kentucky’s insurance commissioner says workers compensation costs in the Commonwealth have declined for the 9th consecutive year. In fact, Sharon Clark says only eight other states have a lower rate for workers comp than Kentucky…

Clark says controlling workers compensation costs is a tremendous incentive for a company to locate in Kentucky.

Jobs Needed In East Kentucky

Jul 3, 2014
City College of San Francisco

Kentucky Democratic Senator Robin Webb from Carter County says she’d like to see state economic development officials work with businesses and entrepreneurs to offer more incentives to invest in eastern Kentucky.

Webb says few of the projects being launched in the Commonwealth are taking place in her region of the state.

Beshear Wants Highway Funding Restored

Jul 3, 2014

Governor Beshear is calling on Congress to act quickly to fix the federal Highway Trust Fund because the consequences of failing to do so could be severe. The Trust Fund is expected to run out of money near the end of August of this year.

Beshear says Kentucky is reimbursed from the fund when it spends state money on federal transportation projects. However, if those projects have to be held up because of funding uncertainty, Beshear says, “that’s a job killer.”

Minimum Wage Bill Passes House, Moves To Senate

Feb 7, 2014

The Kentucky House of Representatives has passed a bill to increase the minimum wage in the Commonwealth.  The measure raises the minimum wage 95 cents a year over a three year period.  If enacted into law, the hourly rate would go from $7.25 cents to $10.10 after three years. 

House Speaker Greg Stumbo brought the issue before his chamber. 

“You believe as I believe that people are entitled to a living wage, a wage that allows them to purchase not an extravagant lifestyle, but at least the necessities of life,” said Stumbo.

Unity March Honors Dr. Martin Luther King

Jan 20, 2014
Ball State Daily

Thousands gathered in downtown Lexington Monday morning (Jan. 20) for an annual tribute to civil rights legend Martin Luther King, Jr. 

While the march through downtown Lexington is a mainstay, several participants say there's much more to be done if our society is to live up to Dr. King's dream of racial and economic equality. 

Kennedy Nelson believes more people should experience an event like the annual unity breakfast.

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says Kentucky, West Virginia, Tennessee and Louisiana are being included in a federal program intended to help persistently poor rural communities. The secretary made the announcement on Friday (January 17) at the Pine Mountain State Resort Park.

Vilsack says the so-called StrikeForce initiative will enable 73 Kentucky counties to take advantage of USDA programs involving conservation, food assistance and home and business loans.

Extended Jobless Benefits Proposed

Jan 9, 2014
Abandoned North Carolina

Kentucky Congressman John Yarmuth says the House of Representatives should re-commit itself to the War on Poverty by passing a three-month extension of jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed.

The Jefferson County Democrat says the assault launched half a century ago by President Lyndon Johnson made a difference.

Yarmuth says programs like Medicare, Medicaid, Food Assistance and Head Start have improved many lives.