Scott Walker
Gov. Scott Walker JOHN HART - State Journal

Wisconsin added 9,500 jobs in June, in part because of a renewed focus on drawing tourists to the state, Gov. Scott Walker said Thursday.

The state added 12,900 jobs in the private sector but lost 3,400 government jobs in June, according to seasonally adjusted numbers released by the state Department of Workforce Development.

The governor credited the state's numbers to "a rebirth of tourism" following broad efforts to publicize Wisconsin's state fairs, ethnic festivals and sporting events.

"Tourism is more than a $12 billion industry in the state of Wisconsin," he said. "This is about putting people to work."

Wisconsin was not the only state to add a substantial number of jobs in June. Minnesota reported adding 13,200 jobs, and Massachusetts added 10,400.

Nationally, the country added 18,000 jobs. So while some states added jobs, many states lost thousands. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics is expected to release a full breakdown of the numbers Friday.

On Thursday, Walker said he didn't have details on which specific industries gained jobs. However, the Department of Workforce Development confirmed almost half of the private-sector growth was in the leisure and hospitality industry. There were 6,200 jobs created in that sector last month, and 3,300 more jobs than in June 2010.

Walker said some were seasonal jobs but an unspecified number would carry over into subsequent months. "We ran a $3 million marketing campaign this summer," Tourism Secretary Stephanie Klett said, "and I think today with this announcement we are seeing the results in a big way."

When asked if the new jobs pay livable wages, Walker said the numbers were sorted only by industry, not income.

Even though Wisconsin added almost 10,000 jobs in June, the state's unemployment rate actually nudged up for the month to 7.6 percent, up 0.2 percentage points. That's because the job numbers and employment numbers come from two surveys, DWD spokesman John Dipko said.

The state Democratic party said the job numbers look promising, but party chairman Mike Tate said it is important to know what types of jobs were created.

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