March 7, 2024
Albany, NY

New York is Back: Governor Hochul Celebrates New York’s Full Economic Recovery from the Pandemic as State Reaches More Than 8,300,000 Private-Sector Jobs

New York is Back: Governor Hochul Celebrates New York’s Full Economic Recovery from the Pandemic as State Reaches More Than 8,300,000 Private-Sector Jobs

New York State Department of Labor Data Shows 100 Percent of Private-Sector Jobs Recovered Since the Pandemic – Data Available Here

Job Growth Driven by Key Sectors Like Private Education & Health Services, Leisure & Hospitality, and Professional & Business Services

Follows Governor Hochul’s Signature Initiatives to Help Businesses and Workers Recover From the Pandemic – Including $1 Billion Small Business Rescue Plan and $450 Million “Bring Back Tourism, Bring Back Jobs” Recovery Package

Builds on Governor Hochul’s Commitment to Making New York the Most Worker-Friendly and Business-Friendly State in the Nation

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Governor Kathy Hochul today celebrated New York’s full economic recovery from the pandemic following the release of New York State Department of Labor data showing a total statewide private-sector job count of 8,346,200 jobs – the highest level on record. According to the new data, New York gained 47,000 private-sector jobs in January 2024 with key sectors like Private Education and Health Services, Leisure and Hospitality, and Professional and Business Services driving job growth. Overall, the state has recovered 1,935,600 private-sector jobs since the height of the pandemic in April 2020 when statewide jobs reached a 30-year low of just 6.4 million jobs. The milestone follows signature initiatives by Governor Hochul to help businesses and workers recover from the pandemic – including a $1 billion Small Business Rescue Plan and $450 million “Bring Back Tourism, Bring Back Jobs” recovery package – and builds on the Governor’s commitment to making New York the most business-friendly and worker-friendly state in the nation.

“With jobs at an all-time high across the state, New York’s economy hasn’t just recovered – it’s been completely transformed,” Governor Hochul said. “Business is booming, New Yorkers are getting back to work, and thanks to a major economic relief package I announced in my first months in office, our communities are stronger and more vibrant than ever. New York is back, and with our historic recovery and record-breaking 8.3 million jobs, my administration is moving full-steam ahead to keep creating good-paying jobs that help New Yorkers build a future here in our state.”

New York State Department of Labor Commissioner Roberta Reardon said, “I thank Governor Hochul for advancing initiatives that accelerated economic recovery, created career opportunities for New Yorkers, and supported businesses statewide. I encourage job seekers to take advantage of our robust services so we can help connect them to careers they will love.”

New Labor Data
NYSDOL today released new monthly jobs data, which shows an 0.6 percent increase in private-sector jobs since December 2023 and a 0.2 percent increase since January 2023. The growth was driven by key sectors like Natural Resources & Mining (6.1 percent), Private Education & Health Services (4.4 percent), Leisure & Hospitality (4.7 percent) and Finance (1.3 percent). In addition, the statewide unemployment rate decreased to 4.5 percent.

Private sector job growth was distributed across New York State from January 2023 to January 2024 with the highest rates of growth in Ithaca (6.4 percent), Watertown-Fort Drum (5 percent), Kingston (4.1 percent) and Glen Falls (2.5 percent). New York City’s total private sector job count also increased by 1.7 percent to 4,091,700 and private-sector jobs on Long Island rose by 1.8 percent to 1,129,100.

NYSDOL’s monthly jobs data is available here.

Governor Hochul’s Pandemic Recovery Package
Governor Hochul has prioritized New York’s economic recovery since the very start of her administration and has launched signature initiatives to help businesses and employees recover from the pandemic. As part of the FY 2023 Budget, the Governor secured funding for a $1 billion Small Business Rescue Plan to provide tax relief and targeted responses to small business needs. The Governor’s Rescue Plan included an $800 million COVID-19 Pandemic Small Business Recovery Grant Program to support small and micro-businesses left out of federal business recovery initiatives, which ultimately served more than 40,000 New York businesses.

Just months after taking office, the Governor also announced a $450 million Bring Back Tourism, Bring Back Jobs Tourism Inclusive Recovery Package to support New York’s tourism industry – one of the hardest hit by the pandemic – and help tourism sector employees return to work. The package included a $100 million Tourism Worker Recovery Fund, a $100 million Tourism Return-to-Work Grant Program, a $25 million Meet in New York Grant Program, a $25 million investment in I LOVE NY marketing, and $200 million Seed Funding Grant Program for early-stage businesses impacted by the pandemic.

Governor Hochul has also secured other major investments to support businesses and workers through New York’s economic recovery. As part of the FY 2023 Budget, the Governor identified $2 billion in reserve pandemic funding to support one-time, non-recurring programs to lift up New Yorkers who were hit especially hard by the pandemic. The Governor also successfully advocated for more than $550 million in federal pandemic recovery grants through the State Small Business Credit Initiative.

State Senator Sean M. Ryan said, “Today more people are employed in New York than ever before, and that is something to celebrate. It has been a long road coming back from the pandemic, but the data shows that our state is moving forward. Jobs are up, inflation is down, and new small businesses are opening their doors. As Chairman of the NYS Senate Committee on Commerce, Economic Development, and Small Business, I remain focused on our continued efforts to build on this economic progress to ensure a brighter future for all New Yorkers.”

Assemblymember Al Stirpe said, “As Chair of the Assembly's Committee on Economic Development, Job Creation, Commerce and Industry I am elated that New York State has made a full economic recovery with 100% of private-sector jobs recovered since the pandemic and substantial job growth in education, health, hospitality, finances, professional, and business services. The Governor's initiatives to invest in small businesses, tourism, and jobs have secured a brighter future for the workers and business owners in Central New York and throughout New York State.”

Monroe County Executive Adam Bello said, “New York’s full economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic is a milestone worth celebrating! Governor Kathy Hochul’s strategic emphasis on empowering small business owners, rejuvenating our tourism sector, safeguarding workers and cultivating a more welcoming environment for businesses transformed our challenges into opportunities and prospects for additional growth. The strength of our economy underscores the strength of our collective resolve to ensure a resilient and flourishing economy for all New Yorkers. With Gov. Hochul’s continuing leadership and commitment to innovation, I have no doubt our future is filled with growth, opportunity and prosperity.”

City of Ithaca Mayor Rob Cantelmo said, “These jobs numbers are a testament to the resilience and dynamism of New Yorkers. Thanks to Governor Hochul's leadership, we are continuing a strong recovery and reminding the world why New York is one of the best places to do business. Now it's time to roll up our sleeves and build the housing necessary to support our workers and businesses and continue this positive trend.”

Chairman Dan Klein, Tompkins County Legislature said, "Tompkins County is bursting at the seams with jobs. We have more jobs than housing for people to fill those jobs. NY State has been there as a strong partner in our efforts to strengthen Tompkins County’s economy and jobs market."

Village of Watkins Glen Mayor Laurie DeNardo said, “The Village of Watkins Glen managed staffing levels considerably well during the pandemic due to amenities within our area including our beautiful Watkins Glen State Park. NYS is on the path to the pandemic recovery and these statewide numbers reflect that. In Schuyler County, our tourism levels and job growth has expanded post-pandemic and our community is thriving.”

Governor Hochul’s Economic Development Agenda
New York’s historic pandemic recovery reflects Governor Hochul’s broader commitment to making New York the most welcoming state in the nation for businesses and workers, and as part of that commitment, the Governor has embraced a sweeping innovation agenda to build emerging industries in New York. Governor Hochul signed New York’s historic Green CHIPS legislation to drive semiconductor research, development, and manufacturing in New York State and announced a $10 billion partnership to bring next-generation chips research to NY CREATES’ Albany NanoTech Complex. The Governor has continued to advance a $620 million Life Science Initiative to support innovation in biomedical research. And through strategic investments like the $113.7 million Battery-NY initiative, Governor Hochul has fueled the growth of the sustainability, green technology, and energy storage economies in New York State.

Governor Hochul is also committed to developing New York’s workforce and strengthening the talent pipeline to prepare New Yorkers for good-paying, 21st century jobs. As part of the FY 2023 Budget, the Governor secured funding to create a $350 million Office of Strategic Workforce Development focused on improving the State's workforce development programs and practices to better align with the needs and priorities of today's employers. Governor Hochul has also proposed a $200 million investment as part of her FY 2025 Executive Budget for the One Network for Regional Advanced Manufacturing Partnerships (ON-RAMP) initiative to establish a network of four new workforce development centers along the I-90 corridor in upstate New York.

In addition, the Governor has continued to support local and regional economic development through signature initiatives such as the Downtown Revitalization Initiative, NY Forward, Restore NY and FAST NY.

Partnership for New York City President & CEO Kathryn Wylde said, “Governor Hochul’s steady leadership has inspired confidence, encouraging the business investment and job creation that has driven economic recovery across New York State.”

Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Randy Peers said, “New York State is one of the most resilient places on earth, and the recent announcement that we have recovered 100 percent of jobs lost during COVID, underscores our economic resiliency. The small business community applauds Governor Hochul’s economic leadership during these challenging few years, and we look forward to expanding on the success we have made during this recovery period.”

President and CEO of the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce Jessica Walker said, “During the height of the COVID pandemic some questioned whether New York would ever bounce back. Today, we can clearly see that our state is stronger than ever. Small businesses and new entrepreneurs, in particular, are leading the way and there is no question that Governor Hochul’s strategic investments in this area have played a key role.”

President of the North Country Chamber of Commerce Garry Douglas said, "Our region is definitely back to pre-pandemic job levels, if not even stronger. On the manufacturing front, most of our companies are in growth mode and the Governor's commitment to transportation equipment and aerospace is a direct part of that. And on the tourism front, we have seen a very strong return of our Canadian friends, reaching an estimated 92% of 2019 levels in 2023, while also retaining the growth of downstate visitation that came during the pandemic. North Country business expressed an 82% Business Confidence Index in January, with 60% expecting business growth this year, both generating and benefitting from strong employment. Onward and upward!"

Finger Lakes Workforce Investment Board Executive Director Lynn Freid said, “In rural communities such as the four counties of the Finger Lakes region, Wayne, Ontario, Seneca and Yates, The Finger Lakes Workforce Development Board has remained active during this recovery time continuing to address labor shortages by utilizing resources available via the Governor's office, NY State Department of Labor and other resources, continuing to provide resources, supports and services to our communities. This includes our County Career Centers that assist working families to identify training to employment opportunities specific to industries in the Finger Lakes region.”

Executive Director of the MARK Project Peg Ellsworth said, “In a region such as the Southern Tier that relies heavily on tourism as an economic driver, the Governor’s effort to bring tourism back in the post pandemic environment has proven successful. Coupled with support for small business and opportunities for downtown destinations to thrive, this has resulted in sustainable private sector job growth across upstate NY and the state as whole.”

RochesterWorks, Inc. Executive Director Dave Seeley said, “Today’s milestone is a testament to the resiliency of New York’s economy- both our employers as well the millions of individuals who comprise our workforce. I applaud Governor Hochul, not only for her efforts to help our state recover from the pandemic, but also for the historic investments in workforce development she has spearheaded, which will help assure all New Yorkers can participate in our growing economy.”

President & CEO of CenterState Robert M. Simpson said, "The data reflected in this report reinforces what we know about the strength of our economy in New York State and specifically, the Central New York region. It further underscores our significant prospects for future job creation and economic prosperity. We have earned this moment through partnerships, strategic alignment, and creativity. We are grateful to have partners at the state and federal level that support our efforts and work alongside us as we advance unprecedented growth and opportunity.”

NCREDC Co-Chairs James McKenna and Kathryn Morris said, "Governor Hochul's initiatives have put our job growth back on track. Her leadership and vision has positioned the North Country for strong job growth in the future. Specifically, the Governor's challenge to the Regional Economic Development Councils in 2023 awarded $10m to the North Country for Next Move NY. Next Move NY is creating the most robust transitioning soldiers and spouses job pipeline in the nation. Thank you Governor Hochul."

Empire State Development President, CEO and Commissioner Hope Knight said, "Under Governor Hochul's leadership, New York has made strategic and targeted investments in key industries to spur the state's post-pandemic recovery, creating jobs and generating new economic growth. The latest Department of Labor data demonstrates the importance and significance of these collective efforts, which are producing new opportunities for more New Yorkers."

Co-chair of the Southern Tier Regional Economic Development Council and Schuyler County Partnership for Economic Development Executive Director Judy McKinney Cherry said, “Schuyler County was deeply impacted by the 2020 pandemic, losing a high percentage of jobs, and triggering a recession. It’s a sign of our strength and resilience that by April 2023, we regained the jobs lost, and our businesses have rebounded stronger than before. The Southern Tier region is continually working on new, innovative ways to approach our workforce and I am confident that the future is bright for our region and for the state of New York.

Co-chair of the Mohawk Valley Regional Economic Development Council and President of Gilroy, Kernan & Gilroy Insurance Lawrence Gilroy said, “I am glad to see the number reinforces the energy that we see in the Mohawk Valley region. I am looking forward to seeing us go from catching up to surpassing in the future.”

Co-chair of the Mohawk Valley Regional Economic Development Council and President of SUNY Cobleskill Dr. Marion Terenzio said, “Under Governor Hochul's leadership through the entirety of the pandemic as then-Lieutenant Governor and now as Governor, New York State has never once let up on its march toward fully recapturing our economic vitality. Only through monumental vision could New York fully reclaim and support its private sector economic market in such a short time, and through the Governor's leadership and that of her executive staff, that is precisely what has been achieved. The Mohawk Valley is proud to play its part in this recovery through this year's $10 million Regional Economic Development Council Challenge Competition award, with the confidence that our state leaders will continue to prioritize investments that foster innovation, create jobs, and ensure prosperity for all our communities.”

Greater Utica Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Kari Puleo said, “We are encouraged to see these numbers; we continue to see growth in the health care, tourism industry, and advanced manufacturing sectors and they are aligned with the jobs currently open in the Mohawk Valley region. We encourage job seekers to come experience Upstate NY where high paying jobs, combined with a great quality of life exist.”

Workforce Development Board Herkimer, Madison, & Oneida Counties, Inc. Executive Director Alice Savino said, “Job growth in our region thrives on the exceptional partnerships we've forged, catering to the demands of our core sector employers and emerging businesses. Our workforce programs stand ready to continue to propel regional growth forward, collaborating closely with employers, community partners, and state agencies to address today's needs while shaping tomorrow's workforce.”

Herkimer County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Denise Cavanaugh said, “Herkimer County is encouraged that New York State has made a full economic recovery with the private sector jobs since the pandemic by the Governor’s efforts in Economic Development. We are thrilled that the Village of Herkimer is a recipient of a $10 million DRI and are looking forward to becoming a greater spot for tourism.”

43North President Colleen E. Heidinger said, “43North is grateful for the continued support of New York State and Governor Kathy Hochul, who last year renewed the state's financial commitment to our accelerator program, ensuring that 43North can continue to fuel economic vibrancy and add to the 1,000+ jobs we've already created in Western New York. Governor Hochul has championed and recognized the tech and innovation ecosystem as a catalyst to Buffalo's resurgence, and with her support, we look forward to creating more opportunities and jobs in the region.”

Contact the Governor’s Press Office

Contact us by phone:

Albany: (518) 474-8418
New York City: (212) 681-4640


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