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Government Sector

GOVERNMENT SECTOR - State and local governments employ about 7.2 million workers, placing them above the largest employers in the economy. Two-thirds of them work in local governments consisting of counties, cities, special districts, municipalities and towns.

State and Local Government

Industry description

Since the 1990's the Federal government has turned over many of their practices to state and local government, which allows for specialized programs to meet needs.

Needs and initiatives

The work conditions in this industry vary by occupation. Some of the work is quite dangerous, such as fire fighters, police and prison guards.


If you are interested in this industry you may often be asked to work nights and holidays. This is particularly true for utility, transit and social service workers.

Greatest segment needs

Nearly every level of occupations are needed in this industry, which include managers, engineers, computer occupations, secretaries and technicians. Certain occupations are only found in government and include legislators, police, regional planners, sheriff, tax examiners and magistrates. Chief executives are needed such as mayors, governors, and city managers. Inspectors and compliance officers make certain that regulation are adhered to for the public's protection. Urban planners are concerned with water, land and construction. Judges, magistrates, lawyers, bailiffs and court clerks serve in a court of law. Social workers counsel and assess the needs of clients.

State and Local Government's Occupational Outlook


The education needs in this industry vary considerably. A high school education is needed for bus and subway operators. Firefighters and police need to pass a civil service exam and have training from a college. A bachelor's degree is usually needed for urban planning and a master's degree in public administration is required for city managers.


Average earnings also vary by occupation and various localities of the country. Police officers average about $15.76 to $17.65 per hour. Social workers salaries are about $14.80 to $15.44. Firefighters earn from $14.14 on average to $15.10. Correction officers and jailers are paid about $13.14 to $14.27 per hour.

Employment Outlook

The outlook is projected to increase about 12 percent during the period of 1998 - 2008. This is slower then the overall average of 15%. Some areas are growing faster which include protective services, while urban panning jobs are expected to be about average. Slow growth is projected for executive, administrative, transit and managerial jobs.

Center for Employment Services at Lansing Community College

Career and Employment Services
Gannon Building - StarZone
Phone: (517) 483-1172
Additional contact information »

Non-Profit/Gov Job Fair

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