Buffalo is a hotbed for transportation jobs and the city is losing a lot of them, officials said.
Bruces and Erie County are losing jobs at least a third of what they once did, and the region’s population is shrinking, Erie County Commissioner Richard K. Peddie Jr. said in an interview Tuesday.
Peddie said his office has filed numerous complaints with the state and federal governments.
The Buffalo area has seen a steady decline in its population, but the numbers are so low it’s not clear how many jobs are lost, he said.
The Erie County Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the region has lost 8,000 jobs in the past decade, including 5,400 to people moving to the Erie County cities of Buffalo and Erie, according to the agency’s report.
Pederne Pahlqvist, president of the Buffalo Chamber of Commerce, said the area’s unemployment rate is double that of the national average.
In 2016, Erie lost more than 300 jobs in Buffalo.
The county has about 2.2 million residents, and Peddies estimates there are about 12,000 vacant jobs in Erie.
The number of job vacancies in Erie County is nearly 10 times the national jobless rate, he told CNN.
Peds on bikes and walking to work are among those who are losing their jobs, Peddes said.
He said the Erie and Buffalo region is seeing a drop in people who want to work in the transportation industry.
In 2014, the region had more than 20,000 truck drivers, but those positions have been lost, according the report.PEDs and pedestrians, including those who walk, need to get out and get work, Pederes said, adding that his office will be filing lawsuits with the states and the federal government to get back those jobs.
Buffalo’s population has dropped by about 11% in the last five years, Padel said.
A study from the University of Wisconsin shows that, over the past five years in the state, Buffalo has lost roughly a quarter of its population.
That decline in population has been driven by the region losing more than 10,000 people, the study found.
The population in Buffalo has grown about 7% over the same period.