Texas Labor Market Continues to Add Jobs in Construction, Mining Sectors


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The Texas workforce continued its healthy year of growth at the end of 2014, with the economy creating a seasonally-adjusted 457,900 nonfarm jobs over the course of the year, making December the fifth month in a row of record-breaking job growth.

The state’s unemployment rate now sits at 4.6%, down from 4.9% in November and 6.0% a year ago, according to a Texas Workforce press release.

“Every major industry added jobs over the year, benefiting from a strong business climate and a growing, competitive and high quality Texas workforce,” Texas Workforce Commission Chairman Andres Alcantar said.

Among the industries experiencing the most growth last month were the construction sector, with 5,100 jobs created, and the mining sector, which added 4,900 jobs, the state’s workforce report found.

However, some Texans are expressing discontent with the influx of new mining work, particularly in Kaufman County, where a limestone mine is infringing upon nearby rural residents.

According to a January 25 Dallas Morning News article, residents living on farm tracts near a valuable limestone vein about eight miles from the outskirts of Terrell are finding the mining blasts are taking a major toll on their quality of life — and on their homes’ condition.

“My house is unrepairable. And now they’re getting closer,” said Joe Rice, who has filed a property lawsuit against mining company Trinity Materials Inc. due to the impact the blasts have had on his home.

Cory Shidler, who has also filed a lawsuit against Trinity, said he received no warning when the mining blasts started in May of last year, but soon discovered significant damage throughout his home. His house’s structural integrity was even compromised, with the blasts shifting it 3 to 4 inches off its slab. This led to even further foundational damage and subsequent cracks in the home’s walls.

And while the first blasts were the most violent, residents still experience the effects of the “average explosions” that continue on a day-to-day basis.

“You can be in my house and see stuff shaking my walls,” Rice said. “If you were standing in my house and it went off, it would scare you.”

Meanwhile, spokespeople from Trinity have said the company expects to be mining at this site for as long as 20 years or more. The mining company has made certain concessions to mine at the site, including funding the expansion of the road that leads to the site, obtaining permits and working under the supervision of the sheriff’s department.

But for the people who live near the mine, life doesn’t appear to be getting easier. This is a great source for more. Visit here for more information. Visit here for more.

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