The average unadjusted (not seasonally adjusted) unemployment rate of 8.9 percent for the county in February 2012 is lower than the revised number of 9.7 percent reported for the same time period from a year ago.

Although Santa Barbara County’s average unemployment rate remained consistent with revised numbers for January 2012, the county’s unemployment ranking compared to the other 57 counties in California was positioned as the 7th lowest in the state with strengthening of employment numbers with businesses in Trade, Transportation and Utilities, Retail Trade, and Leisure & Hospitality within the county. Marin County again reported the lowest unemployment rate among all 58 California counties with a reported unemployment rate of 6.6 percent.

California’s seasonally adjusted rate for February 2011 was reported today by the EDD to be 12.0 percent.

“The job recovery process is working throughout the nation and within the county as we see pockets of growth and optimism in the labor market,” said Raymond McDonald, Executive Director of the Santa Barbara County Workforce Investment Board. “This optimism is supported by the increase in job advertising throughout the county for workforce members in key sectors that drive the local economy.”

Nevertheless, for February 2012 there are regions within the county that continue to be hit with unacceptably high unemployment rates. Lompoc at 15.5 percent; Guadalupe at 15.1 percent and Santa Maria at 13.8 percent are all in double-digits.


The Workforce Investment Board,, is dedicated to serving the workforce needs of businesses, adults, laid-off workers and youth throughout Santa Barbara County. The WIB is a public/private partnership created by the Federal Workforce Investment Act (WIA) and is staffed by the County of Santa Barbara.

Job seekers and employers can take advantage of free services at two Workforce Resource Centers (“One-Stops”) to help find work or new employees. Programs include employment services for job seekers, the latest labor market information and regional workforce research for businesses, as well as training that specialize in helping people gain the skills and confidence necessary to find and obtain a job. The One-Stop Shops are at 1410 S. Broadway in Santa Maria, (805) 614-1550, and 130 E. Ortega Street in Santa Barbara, (805) 568-1296. Online information is available at

For more information please go to: or to for the full statewide unemployment figures


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