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Santa Maria Sun / News

The following article was posted on September 25th, 2013, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 14, Issue 29 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 14, Issue 29

Political Watch 9/26/13

• The Santa Maria Valley Republicans will have their monthly meeting on Friday, Oct. 4, at 11:30 a.m. For more information or to RSVP, e-mail Mariln Brown at buglegroup@yahoo.com.

 

• The unemployment rate for Santa Barbara County was 6.3 percent in August 2013, according to figures released Sept. 20 by the State Employment Development Department (EDD). However, the rates in Northern Santa Barbara County remain high, with the cities of Lompoc, Guadalupe, and Santa Maria coming in at 14.7 percent, 14.2 percent, and 13 percent. All the other cities in the county have unemployment rates of 6.1 percent or lower. Compared to the other 57 counties in California, Santa Barbara County has the sixth lowest unemployment rate. This was credited largely to industry sectors in Santa Barbara remaining relatively steady for the month of August, with an increase of 300 jobs. After months of continuous cuts, government gained 200 positions. Trade, transportation, and utilities gained 200 jobs for the same period. Construction, manufacturing, professional and business services, and leisure and hospitality also increased by 100 positions each. Information was the only industry that trimmed jobs (100 for the month of August).

 

• On Sept. 18, U.S. Representatives Lois Capps (D-Santa Barbara), Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), and Raùl M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.) sent a letter to President Barack Obama urging him to nominate Federal Reserve Vice Chair Janet Yellen to head the Federal Reserve when chairman Ben Bernanke’s term expires at the end of the year. According to a press release from Capps’ office, the letter refers to Yellen’s “detailed understanding of the monetary process, track record of leadership, and management skills as factors that make her an excellent leader of the Federal Reserve.” The letter also highlights Yellen’s work to keep interest rates low to boost employment, as well as her efforts to strengthen consumer protection measures. Republican Sheila Bair, the former chairwoman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., is also backing Yellen, writing in an op-ed for the Fortune/CNN Money website, “with a decade of experience in Fed leadership positions, Yellen is supremely well-qualified” and “opposing her would be harmful to the [Republican] party.” Bair wrote that although Yellen is a Democrat who once worked for Bill Clinton, she would be independent of the White House because most of her career has been spent in academia or the Fed. “And by blocking her,” she continued in the article, “the GOP will risk the public perception that they oppose her because she is outside the male-dominated Wall Street club.”