HOLLAND, Mich. (WZZM) -- New numbers show Ottawa County remains one of the leaders in job growth across the state, and an economist predicted the same positive trend for 2014.
George Erickcek with the Upjohn Institute spoke to business and government leaders Tuesday morning at a West Coast Chamber of Commerce event.
Erickcek says the county's job growth improved by 2.2% in 2013, and he predicts that number will rise to 2.4% in 2014.
Erickcek says the amount of manufacturing jobs is improving across the board, but he says construction jobs are still struggling. "At this point, we're seeing construction being weak and part of that I believe is that we have a shortage of skilled workers in construction. Construction was so hard hit during the recession that many people left the industry and it's going to be a while before people return."
The numbers also show nearly 30% of Ottawa County residents who are employed are working in Kent County.