MEDFORD, Ore. — The gradual economic recovery from the height of COVID-19 job losses continues in southern Oregon, with Jackson County reaching an important milestone be surpassing where it was two years ago in terms of job gains.
According to the latest data from the Oregon Employment Department, Jackson County added another net 660 jobs in August, with the largest gains coming in retail trade, private educational and health services, local government education, manufacturing, and professional and business services. Some slight losses came from the construction and leisure and hospitality sectors.
Over the past year, payroll employment in Jackson County rose by 4,840 jobs, or a gain of 5.7 percent.
"Jackson County is one of just a handful of counties that are now above their pre-pandemic total payroll employment level in August 2019," OED said in a statement. "According to preliminary estimates, Jackson County is 650 jobs above the August 2019 job total."
The largest areas of job recovery since last year came in retail trade, leisure and hospitality, professional and business services, and construction.
Josephine County also added net jobs in August, with total payroll employment rising by 100 jobs over the month. The largest gain came in private educational and health services. Like in Jackson County, there were some losses in leisure and hospitality.
Since August of 2020, Josephine County has recovered 990 jobs, a gain of 3.8 percent. These gains still leave the county 560 jobs below its August of 2019 pre-pandemic level. The largest gains came in private education and health services, construction, retail trade, and manufacturing.