Construction employment was up in four of Wisconsin’s metropolitan areas, unchanged in three and down in five in March.
Those seasonally adjusted numbers were reported Tuesday by the Associated General Contractors of America. The Wisconsin metropolitan statistical area to see the biggest gain was the Appleton area, where construction jobs increased by 13 percent in the 12 months leading through March this year. That amounted to an increase of 900 jobs.
Industry employment also increased in the Fond du Lac, Madison and Sheboygan areas. Decreases were meanwhile seen in the Eau Claire, Janesville-Beloit, Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis, Oshkosh-Neenah and Wausau areas. Employment held steady in the Green Bay, La Crosse-Onalaska and Racine areas.
Wisconsin’s numbers painted a contrast to the AGC’s national figures, which showed that construction employment was up in 224 of the U.S.’s 358 metropolitan statistical areas and down in only 92.
AGC officials said President Donald Trump’s proposal to reduce the taxes paid by construction companies and other businesses would let companies put more money into hiring.
“While there are a lot of questions that need to be answered, the president has initiated what should be a robust and productive debate about the best way to reform our dated tax code,” Steve Sandherr, AGC chief executive, said in an official statement. “As an industry that pays among the highest effective tax rates in the country, the construction sector welcomes any effort to make taxes on employers more equitable and more reasonable.”