State, County Unemployment Rate Up Slightly
The California unemployment rate ticked up one-tenth of a percent to 4.2% in December compared to November, according to data released today by the State Employment Development Department (EDD). However, 68,700 state residents were added to the employment rolls in December. L.A. County experienced a similar increase in the unemployment rate, with December at 4.8%. A year ago December, the county’s unemployment rate was at 4.5%. The county’s civilian labor force increased by 10,000 people in December over November, according to EDD.

Construction Employment Up In 43 States
The Associated Contractors of America announced today that 43 states and the District of Columbia added construction jobs between December 2017 and December 2018. Additionally, 36 states added jobs between November and December of last year. “The construction industry ended 2018 in good shape in nearly all parts of the country, and contractors are optimistic about the volume of work available in 2019,” stated the association’s chief economist, Ken Simonson. “But finding workers to execute those projects is likely to be a major challenge.”

Tomorrow: Community Meeting About CSULB Initiatives
California State University, Long Beach is hosting a meeting tomorrow, January 19, for community members to learn about new developments on campus, including an update to the campus master plan, an alumni center, a study on the Puvunga tribe and other initiatives. 11 a.m., Barrett Athletic Administration Center, Room 200. The building is located to the east of the Walter Pyramid’s parking structure, accessible from Atherton Street via Merriam Way.  For more information contact Melissa Soto at or 562/985-5127.

State Of The Ports
The ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles are both hosting their annual State of the Port events next week. Executive Director Mario Cordero is slated to give his address on the outlook for the Port of Long Beach on Wednesday, January 23, at noon, with a livestream available here.  Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka is giving his address, sponsored by the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association, on January 24. The event begins at 11 a.m., Los Angeles Cruise Terminal, 100 Swinford St. Click here for ticket information.