|Untagged||26 Jun 2009|
|Pittsburgh: Recession Proof? by allegheny|
Early on in this recession that has been gripping the nation, Pittsburgh had gained national recognition as a city that is seemingly recession proof. The basis for this thought was that since the Pittsburgh region never "boomed", it couldn't "bust". Well over the last three months, the recession has not only hit the Pittsburgh area, it has struck hard.
The latest employment figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that from May 2008 to May 2009 the Pittsburgh Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) lost 33,300 total private jobs-the largest such year-over-year loss in at least two decades and the third straight month that claim can be made. In fact the number of May 2009 total private jobs in the area are at the lowest May level since 1998.
While it is impossible to say whether or not this represents the bottom of the recession and that things will start to improve, the area's employers are not being helped by elected officials. With City Council and the Mayor discussing tax increases on hospitals and universities and the Governor wanting to halt the phase out of the capital stock and franchise tax and increasing the personal income tax, the future business climate looks ominous. The mentality of businesses being cash cows to be milked at the government's pleasure will only harm any efforts to climb out of the recession.
Of course this is why the area never "boomed" in the first place.