ATLANTA (WRCB) --  Dalton, GA's July jobless rate rose to 12.5%, an increase from 12.3% in June. The rate was 13 percent in July 2011.

 A press release from the Georgia Department of Labor cites the rate increase due to the labor force growing by 691 job seekers, and while most found jobs within the month, 223 did not.  

Metro Athens had the lowest area jobless rate at 7.4 %. Athens has had the lowest area rate, or tied for the lowest, each month since December 2009. Dalton has had the highest area rate since August 2011.

The number of jobs in the state dropped by 17,900, or five-tenths of a percentage point, from 3,931,900 in June to 3,914,000 in July. There were 20,600 jobs lost among seasonal workers in the local public schools, but some of that loss was offset because the private sector added 5,600 jobs.

In metro Dalton, jobs decreased to 61,200, down by 200 from June, and down by 3,900 from 65,100 in July 2011.

Local area unemployment data are not seasonally adjusted. Georgia labor market data are online.