Contractor group finds LI construction employment in long decline

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By Dan Sears

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Construction employment on Long Island decreased for the sixth straight month in November, according to a new report from the Associated General Contractors of America. 

Nassau and Suffolk counties lost 4,000 construction jobs from November 2022 to November 2023, a 5 percent year-over-year drop, falling from 83,700 to 79,700, the AGCA reports.  

The decline in construction jobs on Long Island last month was the fourth largest decrease out of 358 metropolitan areas in the country. 

Regionally, the number of construction jobs in New York City was up 7 percent, gaining 9,900 jobs from November 2022 to November 2023, rising from 148,300 to 158,200, the second largest jobs increase in the country for that period. 

Construction employment in the Orange/Rockland/Westchester area dropped by 11 percent, losing 5,100 jobs from November 2022 to November 2023, falling from 47,200 to 42,100, the largest job decline in the country, the AGCA said. 

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Between November 2022 and November 2023, construction employment rose in 213 metro areas, declined in 81 areas and was unchanged in 64 areas, according to the AGCA report. 

Association officials noted that labor shortages continue to make it hard for contractors to fill vacancies, according to an AGCA analysis of new government employment data. 

“Although construction employment is still growing in most parts of the country, it is falling in more places than earlier this year,” Ken Simonson, the association’s chief economist, said in an AGCA statement. “In some cases, firms are seeing a slowdown in demand, but for many the biggest challenge is finding enough workers to hire.” 

Besides New York City, metro areas adding the most construction jobs over the last year include the Dallas area, which gained 12,500 jobs for an 8 percent rise; the Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, Calif. area, which added 9,700 jobs for an 8 percent gain; and the Baton Rouge, La. area, adding 9,400 jobs for a 19 percent gain. 

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Besides the Orange/Rockland/Westchester area, the metro areas seeing the largest drops in construction employment from November 2022 to November 2023 include the Houston area, which lost 4,900 jobs for a 2 percent drop and the Seattle area, losing 4,700 jobs for a 4 percent decrease. 

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