The unemployment rate for the month of December 2014 in Sequoyah County was 6.6%. This rate is the second lowest monthly since 2008. At the beginning of 2014 the rate was 8.7% which has steadily declined. The highest monthly unemployment rate in recent history was in February 2010 at 12.8%. The December 2014 rate was 6.6% and the steady monthly decline is a welcome sign for the area. Judy Martens, Executive Director for the Sallisaw Chamber of Commerce said, "We are excited about the low rate. We expect it to go even lower with the addition of 50 new jobs created by the new plant expansion at Aviagen and another manufacturing plant that has added 10 additional jobs."
The Chamber has begun an Economic Development Task Force to try to increase employment in Sallisaw. Chamber Board members have been visiting several area cities in both Oklahoma and Arkansas in hopes of gaining a better understanding of some of the different methods used by other cities in order to encourage economic growth and development. While all city leaders have stressed their own issues with growth, the overall sharing of information has been interesting and informative. "Most of those visited said they learned more from us than we did from them," stated Martens. "It is our expectation at the Chamber that we will have more exciting news to share with citizens in the near future regarding additional new businesses and job creation for our city."
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