You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and interactive features. Starting at just 99c for 8 weeks.

X

Welcome to SpringfieldNewsSun.com

Your source for Clark and Champaign counties’ hometown news. All readers have free access to a limited number of stories every month.

If you are a News-Sun subscriber, please take a moment to login for unlimited access.

Public sector tops Clark’s jobs list

Honda reclaims spot in Top 10.Wright-Patt drives public, private jobs in Clark County.


Public-sector jobs make up half of the list of Clark County’s largest employers, despite past and pending cuts because of state and federal budget problems.

Five of Clark County’s Top 10 largest employers are in the public sector — military, schools and local government. The Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce compiles the list every year.

“It helps us get a better understanding of where our core clusters of industries are and helps the community have a better understanding of the makeup of our community,” said Horton Hobbs, chamber vice president of economic development. “We use this when we’re actively marketing our community.”

This year’s list also shows some growth in manufacturing, with Honda cracking the Top 10 for the first time since, 2009. No manufacturers appeared on the list in 2010 or 2011.

But the employers most affected by government crisis are the ones with the most employees.

“This has been a shift occurring in our economy over the last three or four decades, so this is the latest step in the process,” Springfield Mayor Warren Copeland said.

“We spend a lot of time and effort trying to increase private employment,” Copeland said. “I think the private sector has to be strong for the community to be strong.”

Hobbs said, “When you’ve had an economic downturn, there tends to be, if you look over time, an increase of the public sector and a slower rebound of the private sector.”

Lavea Brachman, executive director of the Greater Ohio Policy Center, said that seeing more public jobs is more of a general shift than a sign of economic decline. Greater Ohio is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that focuses on creating policy for economic development and urban planning.

“Cities like Springfield which are representative of many parts of Ohio and the Midwest will have to build on its assets and economic strengths, so if it’s the public sector at the moment, that’s what’s working,” Brachman said.

Hobbs used Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, which employs more than 900 people in Clark County, as an example of a critical government employer.

“They are public employers, but they are an important driver in our economy, an important key piece,” Hobbs said.

The base not only employs people directly but also provides work for area contractors.

“That is unique to our region … it’s our strength,” Hobbs said.

But with sequester cuts, no one knows how many jobs might be lost from the base or contractors.

Clark County government has always been in the list of top employers, despite cutting jobs the last decade. Administrator Nathan Kennedy said the county employs around 900 people, down from nearly 1,200 a decade ago.

Kennedy said the drop is because local revenues are down from sales tax and from funding from the state. He said that the sequester will not have a significant impact on county jobs.

City government has also lost employees. The city has dropped about 150 jobs, meaning it no longer is one of the Top 10 employers. Copeland said that because of budget issues, the city has not filled any vacancies.

While Clark County may skew toward the public sector, Greater Ohio’s Brachman said Springfield should also consider itself a part of a regional economy that may have more private sector jobs.

“We would like to see the market start working on its own. Some of (the shift) is driven by demand for services,” Brachman said. “Another thing is it’s important that Springfield recognize it’s part of a larger regional economy which would include the larger Dayton region, and that’s an important part of economic recovery.”

Community Mercy Health Partners, which opened Springfield Regional Medical Center in November 2011, remains No. 1 on the list.

Springfield City Schools has actually grown from last year, with about 930 employees. But school treasurer Dale Miller remains cautious about finances.

“In 2005 we were in fiscal emergency, and it was very difficult to do what was in the best interest of children at the time being financially strapped,” Miller said. “But once we were out, we’ve been very careful and trying to stay within our means.”

The schools are waiting to find out about two issues: Ohio’s budget plan and potential federal cuts.

“There are so many dollars attached to so many issues, so we have to wait and see and work through it,” Miller said. “Fortunately, we have the reserves districts need to have time to make the right decisions.”



Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Business

Speedway to hire 1,000 workers across 9 states
Speedway to hire 1,000 workers across 9 states

Speedway will hire 1,000 workers in nine Midwest states and will host open interviews at each of its stores in the region later this month. The convenience store chain, with a headquarters in Enon, will host open interviews from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 25 at every one of its stores in nine states, according to information from the company...
Holiday debt blues? Here’s help getting on track
Holiday debt blues? Here’s help getting on track

John North is president of the Dayton Better Business Bureau. With the holidays behind you, the new year is a great time to get your finances back on track if you’ve slipped a bit. By dedicating yourself to using credit responsibly and sticking to a sensible plan, then you can effectively pay down your debt. According to debt.org, total U.S....
New shopping center proposed at long-vacant Springfield site
New shopping center proposed at long-vacant Springfield site

A new retail development is likely coming to the east side of Springfield at a longtime vacant property, the first major commercial growth there in several years. The Springfield Board of Zoning Appeals approved Wednesday night a variance for the former Roberds site in the 3000 block of East Main Street. City documents filed by developer Springfield...
Gmail phishing scam may lead users to give up login info
Gmail phishing scam may lead users to give up login info

A new phishing scam is allowing hackers to gain access to unsuspecting Gmail users' accounts and target their login credentials, according to recent reports. Mark Maunder, CEO of security service Wordfence, described the scam in detail in a blog post, adding that it is also targeting other services beyond Gmail. Tech Times reported that the scam involves...
Millennials spend more on coffee, save less for retirement
Millennials spend more on coffee, save less for retirement

A large number of Millennials spent more on coffee in the past year than they invested in their retirement savings, according to a new study. » RELATED: What makes Millennials tick in the workplace? It may surprise you About 41 percent of the Millennials — ages 18 to 35 — admitted to spending more on coffee than they saved for retirement...
More Stories