Economist says Jindal 'misinterprets' jobs data
BATON ROUGE - The Legislature's chief economist and Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration are at odds about what state employment data shows about Louisiana's job growth.
Greg Albrecht, with the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Office, says the Jindal administration has been inaccurately describing Louisiana as outperforming much of the South and the nation.
Albrecht says the state is underperforming those regions, largely because of sizable cuts in state government jobs. But he says even if looking only at the private sector, Louisiana is simply performing on par with the South and the nation, not ahead of them.
Jindal's economic development secretary, Stephen Moret, says it's not his agency, but Albrecht that isn't reading the labor figures correctly. Moret says Albrecht is "cherry-picking" numbers.
Moret says Louisiana's private-sector job growth since January 2008 is fourth-best nationwide.