People in Bullock County Push for Growth, New Jobs

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By Brittany Bivins

The new unemployment numbers are in, and while the statewide rate has dropped, the highest percentages remain in the same three counties: Wilcox, Bullock and Dallas. CBS 8 spke with people in Bullock County, who say the job situation is tough. However, some local officials are promising to change that.

The unemployment rate in Bullock County is 15.4%, the second highest in Alabama. Cora Ivery, who lives in Union Springs, says there aren't enough jobs nearby. "I think that they need to fix it by bringing some job education into Union Springs, as well as some industries that people can use to feed themselves," she said.

It's a problem Julian Cope has been tackling since he became director of the Bullock County Development Authority. "It really does concern me. We have people coming in here all the time, you know, saying, I want a job. I want to work, and we have a DVD and we have a website, and we try to, you know, share that."

However, he says that extra education doesn't necessarily mean more jobs for the area. Cope says Bullock County faces tough economic challenges, since it's near the River Region, but not technically a part of it. "We were not able to get into that consortium. I think that would have helped us," he said.

In the meantime, he says there are plans to bring more jobs to the area, including the recent construction of an industrial park, which he hopes will attract more businesses. "Our people want to work. Bullock County is the place for them to be," he said.

The jobs report wasn't all bad news for Bullock County. The total unemployment rate fell almost two points, down from 17.1% in September.

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