Polk County sixth lowest unemployment rate in state

Published 12:22 pm Saturday, December 22, 2012

Employment numbers for Polk County looked bright for the month of October as the county tied with Wake for the sixth lowest unemployment rate in North Carolina.

Polk County’s unemployment rate dropped to 6.8 percent in October, compared to the 7.1 percent it experienced in September. According to the NC Department of Commerce, Polk County has 9,399 individuals in its work force; 639 of those are unemployed.

The area has not seen a rate this low since November 2008.

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Polk County Economic Development and Tourism Development Board Chairman Craig Hilton said he’s optimistic about Polk’s future.

“I believe what we are going to see over the next year and moving forward is an increase in the number of sustainable jobs,” Hilton said. “We are very carefully looking for the ways to help existing businesses expand and the right mix of new businesses so our youth that are graduating from school can stay here and work.”

Fendrich Industries was one of several businesses to boost Polk’s economic outlook during October when it announced the addition of 23 jobs to its textiles manufacturing operation in Tryon. The family-owned company runs Carolina Yarn Processors, which originally opened in Tryon in 1986.

Hilton said the atmosphere of Polk County helps draw businesses here.

“I think Polk County – the entire county – has an amazing quality of life,” Hilton said. “I think we have attracted and are in the process of attracting the types of sustainable jobs that fit into that quality of life.”