The US economy does seem to be doing better, albeit very, very slowly. But, as approximately 20% of the population is either unemployed or underemployed, states are also still confronting budget deficits.
Over the course of this week alone, some 255 teachers and school employees are on the verge of losing their jobs, mostly in small California school districts.
In the Beaumont school district of California 42 teacher layoffs are projected.
The Plainfield, IL school district is cutting 64 jobs in order to eliminate a $3.2 million budget deficit. This district has eliminated 280 jobs during the last 3 years.
The Mt. Diablo school district in Concord, CA approves 89 teacher layoffs.
In Porterville, CA as many as 60 layoffs are being projected, due to a looming $7 million budget deficit.
Then in the private sector: gloomy projections from Massachusetts. Federal budget cuts could bring about the loss of some 50,00 jobs over the next decade. From the Boston Globe:
Automatic across-the-board cuts are scheduled to start in 2013 unless the deeply divided Congress agrees to a better deal to lower the national debt. The automatic cuts would reduce federal spending by $1.2 trillion over the next 10 years by slashing the defense budget and support for other programs, including Medicare.
Such reductions could hurt industries that have helped the state recover from the recent recession faster than the rest of the nation, according to the UMass analysis. Roughly half of the jobs the state would lose would be in defense, health care, and professional and technical services.
While the gains in employment are good news, and the economy seems to be tentatively moving in the right direction, these stories indicate that both state and federal budget shortfalls will mean continued job losses, largely in the public sector.