Finding work in Senate District 1, and most anywhere in North Carolina, is very difficult due to the fiscal irresponsibility of government over the first decade of the 21st Century. From 2000 to 2010, the number of jobless North Carolinians nearly tripled. During that decade the number of unemployed North Carolinians rose at a rate ten times greater than the increase in working-age population. Private sector employment among this population droped nearly 20% leaving only 52.7% employed in the private sector.
At December of 2011, when the Legislature was under Republican control after many decades, the North Carolina unemployment rate was 9.8%, improved from the 11% level at the beginning of 2010. However, this rate is still too high. In fact, half of the counties of District 1 are worse off in December. Beaufort is 10.9%, Dare 15.7%, Hyde 13.2% and Pasquotank 10.4%. Dare County's unemployment rate is one of the worst in the state. The other half are not worse than the state average. However their unemployment rates are also too high. Camden's rate is 8%, Currituck 9.5%, Gates 7.0% and Perquimans 9.8%.
These numbers are not good. We can do much better and here is my vision of how we reduce unemployment in District 1. First we continue the fiscally responsable state budgeting we Republicans began in 2011. We continue to lower spending and taxes but concentrate on lowering taxes for small businesses as they produce, by far, most of the jobs in our economy. We lower energy taxes as they infuence the cost of most goods and services. We continue to reduce regulation that thwarts job growth.