One in eight Jackson County residents deemed part of the workforce by the Oregon Employment Department was jobless in April.

One in eight Jackson County residents deemed part of the workforce by the Oregon Employment Department was jobless in April.

Figures released today by the state showed a seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 12.4 percent, up from 11.7 percent in March but slightly less than the 12.9 percent reported a year ago.

The county's payroll employment rose by 330 jobs in April over March, but the growing number of people looking for work kept the unemployment rate in double figures. Seasonal hiring in construction as well as leisure and hospitality contributed to the monthly job growth. Federal government employment grew by 120 jobs, thanks to Census Bureau hiring.

Year-over-year the county saw a loss of 920 jobs, a decline of 1.2 percent. Construction increased 60 jobs due to gains typically seen as warmer weather returns. But 510 fewer are employed in construction than in April 2009. Manufacturing declined by 40 jobs from March to April as that sector's downward trend continued.

Professional and business services posted a gain of 110 positions. Leisure and hospitality picked up 160 jobs over the month, 140 of those in accommodations and food services.

In Josephine County, the jobless rate hit 14 percent last month, up from 13.7 percent in March.

— Greg Stiles