Hardscrabble Youngstown-Warren Region Strives To Rebuild Economy

Former Aeroquip Property [photo: Ohio Redevelopment Projects/Flickr.com]
Former Aeroquip Property [photo: Ohio Redevelopment Projects/Flickr.com]
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While the state of Ohio overall has seen improvements in its unemployment rate, one region has consistently lagged behind.  Youngstown-Warren business leaders are doing what they can to try to improve the situation.

Throughout the year, the Youngstown-Warren area has had higher unemployment rates than Ohio as a whole, not to mention a recent employment confidence rating of 3…compared to 14 for the state. 

Sarah Boyarko is Vice President of Economic Development, Business Retention, and Expansion for the Regional Chamber of Commerce. 

“We do have some holiday job employment opportunities, so I would think that, yes we’d probably stay where we are and then maybe see a little bit of a change after the first of the year.” 

As in change for the worse, as those holiday jobs go away.  But Boyarko says one bright spot looking ahead is that the Chamber is working with local and national companies on pending investments totaling $1.5 billion.

“And those from a variety of industries.  The food manufacturing, automotive, we do have a handful of oil and gas opportunities that we hope to experience --or have secured-- in the next 12 to 24 months.”

Boyarko says if the investments are carried out across Trumbull and Mahoning Counties, there will be at least 1300 jobs created.  And local officials are hoping that in time, oil prices climb back up and help renew interest in shale development in their region. 

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