Economic forecasters: Maine’s economy growing at steady pace

Unemployment at 7.7 percent - Manufacturing on the rise

Maine’s Consensus Economic Forecasting Commission says Maine’s economy will continue to grow very slowly for the rest of this year and next, with significant growth two years away. The Commission is charged with coming up with the economic forecasts that are used to estimate state revenues.

Maine Department of Labor Economist Glenn Mills says the job outlook appears to have turned a corner at the first of the year.

On October 21 the unemployment rate, in Maine, declined to 7.7% compared to 9.6% nationally. Rhode Island’s unemployment rate is at 13%.

Pine Tree Zones are an economic tool that has proven to attract businesses to Maine. NotifyMd, Barclays, T-Mobil, Kestrel Aircraft, Backyard Farms and others chose Maine over other states to do business in because of Pine Tree Zone tax incentives, which last for ten years.

Maine has 309 companies in that are designated Pine Tree Zones. They represent a total investment of $873 million, with an annual payroll of $341 million. That represents 8,206 jobs.

Out of the 309 – 219 are manufacturing companies.