Jobless rates: Marin, 7.2%; Napa, 8.3%; Sonoma, 9.3%

Unemployment rates across the North Bay dropped slightly in October, with some counties posting job gains and others essentially flat, according to figures released this morning by the California Employment Development Department.

Sonoma County's unemployment rate was 9.3 percent in October, down from a revised 9.4 percent in September and below last year's rate of 9.8 percent. The government sector added 700 jobs, education and health services added 200 jobs and professional services added 100 over the month. Losses occurred in leisure and hospitality, which eliminated 300 jobs, while construction and trade, transportation and utilities lost 100 jobs each.

Marin County, with already the lowest rate in the state, dropped to 7.2 percent in October from 7.5 percent in September and down from 8 percent a year ago. Marin is part of a  three-county West Bay Region that includes San Francisco and San Mateo counties.

Napa County had an unemployment rate of 8.3 percent in October, down from a revised 8.5 percent in September and down from last year's rate of 9 percent. The county continued to post yearly job growth, having added 1,200 jobs since last October, a growth rate of 1.9 percent.

Solano County's unemployment rate was 10.9 percent in October, down from a revised 11 percent in September and below last year's rate of 11.6 percent. The government sector and education and health services added 300 jobs a piece, while professional services netted 200 positions.

Mendocino County had a 9.9 percent unemployment rate in October, down from 10.1 in September and below last year's rate of 10.3 percent. The farming sector added 80 jobs, while leisure and hospitality lost 110 jobs over the month.

Lake County was the only county in the region to see an increase over the last month, with a 16.2 percent joblessness rate in October compared to 15.8 percent in September. However, the rate is down from a year ago, when it was 17.6 percent.

Statewide, the unemployment rate was 11.2 percent in October, down from 11.4 percent in the previous month and 12.1 percent a year earlier. The comparable U.S. rate was 8.5 percent.


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