Unemployment rate in Dalton falls to lowest in 11 years

DALTON, Ga. (WDEF) – Throughout the Tennessee Valley and North Georgia, the economy seems to be on the rebound.

Chattanooga’s unemployment last month was the lowest in 18 months, while the jobless rate in Dalton fell to the lowest in over a decade.

“If you want a job in Dalton, Georgia, you can get it in almost any industry,” says Dalton Mayor David Pennington.

Mayor Pennington attributes it to a rise in people remodeling their homes during the pandemic.

“Home-building is coming back, not as fast as we’d like it to because there’s a shortage of building materials, things like that. But those two things I think led to once again the extremely tight employment situation here.”

Dalton, of course, is the self-described “carpet capitol of the world” .

But despite these gains, the number of workers in the labor market has yet to return to the levels of two years ago.

This comes as the restaurant industry continues to take a hit.

“Some of them are closing earlier because they can’t find workers. In some cases, some of them are not even opening certain shifts because of that,” says Pennington.

But the Mayor says he remains optimistic things will continue on the upswing.

“I think we’re in this industry as far as the carpet industry is concerned for the next few years.”

And in the grand scheme of things, the city has come a long way.

“The first time I was mayor ten years ago we had the highest unemployment rate in the country, now we have about the lowest unemployment rate in the country.”

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