"Chico MSA, which is actually all of Butte County is going to be lagging significantly behind the national recovery," Center for Economic Development Project Specialist Michael Suplita says.
According to the Metro Economic Report issued by the U.S. Conference of Mayors, by the end of 2014, Tthe nation is expected to return to its previous peak employment level set in 2008.
If Butte County maintains its current pace, it won't reach that mark until 2019. But Shasta County, along with 48 other metropolitan areas, nationwide, will not return to their previous employment level anytime this decade. And Suplita says there's a simple reason why the north state is so far behind. "We peaked at the beginning of the recession 2007, first quarter 2007. A lot of these places didn't peak until 2008, 2009."
The Center for Economic Development also states that the housing industry has had a significant impact on these numbers. Cities like Chico and Redding didn't see a huge dip in property value right away.. Which makes for a delay in the rebound. So local officials are looking at other ways to help with the recovery.
Chico City Manager, Dave Burkland says, "We need to be able to be competitive for job creation, business development and that's something we're really trying to position ourselves to do." And although the data projects Butte County's return to job peak in 2019, there is some good news.. An expected significant drop in the unemployment rate. "If you look at their numbers from the end of 2010 to the end of 2013, it's three full percentage points. Which actually translates to a 21% drop in the unemployment rate," says Suplita.
Which analysts expect will be the beginning of a faster recovery. Burkland says, "We need to continue to revitalize our economy because if we revitalize our economy and all cities do that, then the U.S. Economy will recover hopefully soon."