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Construction Employment Rises in 236 of 339 Metro Areas

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Construction employment expanded in 236 metro areas, declined in 53, and was stagnant in 50 between September 2013 and September 2014, according to a new analysis of federal employment data released by Associated General Contractors of America.

Association officials said that, as firms expand their payrolls, many are finding a limited supply of available qualified workers. “It is good news that construction employment gains have spread to more than two-thirds of the nation’s metro areas,” said Ken Simonson, chief economist for the association. “But there is a growing risk that contractors in many of these regions will have trouble finding qualified workers to complete the rising volume of projects.”

According to a recent construction-industry survey conducted by the association, 83% of construction firms report having a hard time finding qualified craft workers. They called on federal, state, and local officials to act on the measures outlined in the association’s workforce-development plan to make it easier to establish new programs designed to prepare students for high-paying careers in construction.

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