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Jobs Available in Plainview, but Special Skills Needed

The unemployment rate regionally and in the town of Oyster Bay is gradually falling; optimism starting to take hold.

Know anything about salads?

A Plainview business needs an "experienced saladman" for an immediate part-time opening.

There's a full-time job for a line cook at the Atria senior living complex. 

And if you're a Registered Nurse, the Plainview Hospital needs a "wound care" specialist, one of many nursing jobs in high demand listed around Long Island.

The unemployment rate for Nassau County and the Town of Oyster Bay continues to inch down, according to state labor statistics released Thursday. For people seeking jobs in Plainview, the figures still imply that you'll need specialized skills or extensive training to get a job around here.

"The numbers reflect that the local economy, the regional economy and the national economy is improving," said Gary Epstein, president of the Plainview Old-Bethpage Chamber of Commerce.

Clearly, Long Island is faring better than the rest of the state and the nation: "The data lists the local unemployment rate at 7 percent, the state rate at 8 percent, and the national rate at 9.1 percent," said Michael K. Crowell, senior economist with the New York State Department of Labor.

"Things are getting better but not very fast," Crowell  said.

"The bright light is education and health services," he said. "Long Island added 6,500 jobs over the year."

Many of those jobs, he said, were in hospitals and doctors offices, a trend clearly reflected in various "help wanted" ads appearing recently in area publications as well as the Plainview Hospital's web site. In fact, the North Shore LIJ system's website had hundreds of job opportunities in a variety of disciplines. There is a local need for dental assistants and medical office help.

The state also listed local unemployment figures. In the Town of Oyster Bay, the unemployment rate for December 2010 was 6.2 percent, down from 6.6 percent in November, and the same as it was in December 2009. Specific figures for Plainview are not reported.

There were 9,627 Oyster Bay residents without jobs last month, compared to 10,232 in November, and 9,644 this time last year, according to the state.

Epstein said many Plainview Chamber members see overall improvement in the economy and feel optimism is starting to become infectious among area employers.

"I would say that optimism is key for any business owner," Epstein said. "The feeling is just as important as the actual numbers. I know that in my business I want to spend money to grow my business before the demand is fully there."

Cromwell said Long Island lost 40,000 jobs in 2009 year over year. Now there are gains in the private sector.

"Just as that's happening, government is losing jobs, putting a damper on the gains made in the private sector," he said. "Those job losses are mainly in the local school districts. We lost 4,500 jobs in government as a whole compared to the year prior."

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