Florida added 12,500 new public sector jobs in March pushing the jobs growth tally over 1.5 million during his tenure, Gov. Rick Scott announced Friday in Orlando.

The latest numbers from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity show the state’s unemployment rate holding at 3.9 percent, with the professional and business services sector leading the way in the 167,000 new private jobs created in the past 12 months.

“Now we’ve passed 1.5 million jobs in seven years and three months, which is exciting to me because as you know it’s what I ran on back in 2010, 700,000 jobs in seven years, and now we’ve way more than doubled that,” Scott, who recently announced his bid for the U.S. Senate, said at VOXX International, an automotive electronics and audio components manufacturing company in Orlando.

The latest numbers show 38,100 new jobs in the professional and business services sector, 32,300 in leisure and hospitality, 31,600 in construction, 21,200 in education and health services, and 15,600 in financial services over the past year.

The office also cited an annual job growth rate of 2.3 percent in Florida, compared with 1.8 percent nationally, and the 3.9 percent unemployment rate represents a decline of 6.9 percentage points since December 2010, faster than the 5.2 percentage points decline seen nationally.

About The Author

Scott Powers is an Orlando-based political journalist with 30+ years’ experience, mostly at newspapers such as the Orlando Sentinel and the Columbus Dispatch. He covers local, state and federal politics and space news across much of Central Florida. His career earned numerous journalism awards for stories ranging from the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster to presidential elections to misplaced nuclear waste. He and his wife Connie have three grown children. Besides them, he’s into mystery and suspense books and movies, rock, blues, basketball, baseball, writing unpublished novels, and being amused. Email him at scott@floridapolitics.com.

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