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Trade group ranks Kansas 4th for growth in construction jobs

  • Eagle Topeka bureau
  • Published Friday, June 20, 2014, at 3:07 p.m.

— Kansas ranks fourth among all states for percentage growth in construction employment, according to one of the industry’s leading trade associations.

Kansas saw an 8.9 percent increase in construction employment between May 2013 and May 2014, according to an analysis from the Association of General Contractors of America. That amounts to about 5,000 jobs.

Nevada saw the highest percent increase at 12.5 percent growth and 7,000 jobs. While California added 37,000 jobs, the most total, at 5.9 percent growth.

Kansas also had a strong May. The state added 1,9000 construction jobs last month alone, a 3.2 percent increase.

Gov. Sam Brownback said the growth in the construction sector is a sign of the state’s economic viability.

“Growth in the construction industry is an indicator of economic strength for the state. This is part of the continuing trend of positive economic news for Kansas,” Brownback said in an email.

But in every state except North Dakota, construction employment levels remain below their pre-recession peak, according to the association.

“With demand for construction growing in most states, many firms are slowly rebuilding their depleted payrolls,” said Stephen E. Sandherr, the association’s chief executive officer. “But if overall economic growth slows, construction employment could backslide in many states.”

Reach Bryan Lowry at 785-296-3006 or blowry@wichitaeagle.com. Follow him on Twitter: @BryanLowry3.

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