Governor Perdue, our self-described “Jobs Governor,” is living up to her title. Although it might need to be tweaked – a more accurate title would be “The Government Jobs Governor.” According to a Charlotte Business Journal article, North Carolina’s unemployment rate dropped from 10.8% in April to 10.3% in May. On the surface, such a decrease appears to be good news. Unfortunately, the rate decrease is the result of growth in the public sector – government added 16,100 jobs.
Meanwhile, the private sector shed jobs. In other words, there are now fewer private employees to support the ever-growing government sector in our state. Unfortunately, this is a long term trend. In 2001, North Carolina had 11.4 private workers for every public sector employee. That number dropped to 10 per public sector employee in 2009 and continues to decrease. Additionally, North Carolina is one of 33 states that have fewer private sector jobs in May 2010 than in May 2000. The state lost 133,400 private sector positions during that time period. On the other hand, Texas, which levies no state income tax, added 661,000 private sector jobs in the same time period.
Public jobs represent wealth transfer, not wealth creation. They are paid for by siphoning money from the private sector, thus inhibiting the private sector’s ability to expand. Governor Perdue should focus on growing the private sector and creating wealth, not growing the public sector and redistributing wealth.