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April 26--  There's a glimmer of good news in unemployment rates, however, our area has the highest unemployment rate in Georgia and remains higher than it was a year ago. 

State Labor Commissioner Mark Butler said today that the preliminary unadjusted unemployment rate in the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha area decreased to 11.7 percent in March, down four-tenths of a percentage point from a revised 12.1 percent in February. The jobless rate in the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha area in March a year ago was 11.3 percent.

“The unemployment rate decreased in the Heart of Georgia-Altamaha area, as well as in all of the state’s other 24 local areas,” said Butler. “This is encouraging, and hopefully indicates that a modest recovery may be building throughout the state.”

The lowest rate, at 7.3 percent was in metro Athens, while the highest rate, at 11.7 percent, was in the Heart of Georgia – Altamaha region around Dublin.

Georgia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for March was 10.0 percent, down two-tenths of a percentage point, from a revised 10.2 percent in February. The state’s jobless rate was also 10.2 percent in March 2010.

March marked the 42nd consecutive month that Georgia has exceeded the national unemployment rate, which is currently 8.8 percent.

Local area unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted. Georgia labor market data are available at