Malloy says job growth positive in state, addresses GE relocation

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HARTFORD--Gov. Dan Malloy visited the Fox CT set on Thursday to discuss the recently released jobs numbers, as well as some other hot-button economy topics.

On Thursday, it was announced that the unemployment rate in the state had fallen to 5.4 percent after 4,100 jobs were added in July. In the past year, more than 30,000 jobs have been added.

"It's our best 12-month period in 15 years," Malloy said.

While some, like economist Ron Van Winkle, agree that the numbers are impressive, there's a caveat: many of the jobs are low-paying, according to Van Winkle.

However, Malloy says "it's just about impossible to find bad news" in the jobs report.

"We have made some tremendous investments in bioscience, in precision manufacturing, in improving our roads and infrastructure, and it's all paying off now," Malloy said,

He also commented that the state is just 3,100 jobs away from getting back to pre-recession private sector jobs levels.

When asked about the recent reports that General Electric is speaking with other states about moving its headquarters out of Fairfield, where 5,700 people are employed, the governor didn't go into detail, but did lay out the situation from his perspective.

"Number one, they're selling a lot of their assets, and so as they sell those assets we're reaching agreements with the buyers of those assets to keep those jobs in our state," he said.

He added that while "a company that has been spun off" from GE can "go to any other state," many, including Synchrony, have actually decided to stay in Connecticut. Synchrony in particular added 400 jobs in the state "relatively quickly" after the spin off, he said.

He also addressed reports that other states are wooing away GE due to the company's very public displeasure with higher corporate taxes in thew new state budget, Malloy said, "We'll compete. We've taken more jobs out of New York than they've taken out of here, I can assure you, and we will continue to do that regardless of what any one company does."

He mentioned that specifically, "four or five companies in the last few years that have moved substantial numbers of jobs out of New York and Into Connecticut," and he says those companies are looking to expand their footprint in our state.

On Thursday, it was reported that GE was in talks with several other cities, include Atlanta, Dallas, and Westchester County in New York as potential locations to relocate its headquarters.