The Great Job Debate

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This week on WTAP at Five, we heard from an employment official with an upbeat outlook on construction jobs in the coming months, but the head of the local contractors association has a different outlook.

Local construction jobs have been at the lowest level since the early 1980's, and Rose Stempel, executive director of the Parkersburg-Marietta Contractors Association, says the outlook for the immediate future isn't much better.

“Construction is booming now in the Morgantown-Fairmont area because of the hospitals," Stemple says. "There, it's really busy, but here it's very slow."

The local contractors association says that with the exception of some highway and public expansion projects, things remain slow.

"Most of the contractors in this association, 80 to 85 percent of their work is in industrial facilities up and down the valley," Stempel says. "And that’s slow."

Stemple says some recent local construction jobs have come from the Corridor D project. There's also been work with the expansion of public debt and Camden-Clark Memorial Hospital.