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Labor Surplus Area

Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 Labor Surplus Areas (LSA)


The Department of Labor (DOL) issues the LSA list on a fiscal year basis. The list becomes effective each October 1, and remains in effect through the following September 30. The reference period used in preparing the current list was January 2015 through December 2016. The national average unemployment rate (including Puerto Rico) during this period was rounded to 5.12 percent. Twenty percent higher than the national unemployment rate during this period is 6.1453 percent. Therefore, areas included on the FY 2018 LSA list had an unemployment rate for the reference period of 6.1453 percent or higher.

To ensure all areas classified as labor surplus meet the requirements, when a city is part of a county and meets the unemployment qualifier as a LSA, that city is identified in the LSA list, the balance of county, not the entire county, will be identified as a LSA if the balance of county also meets the LSA unemployment criteria.

Due to the impact of Hurricane Harvey, several counties in the State of Texas were added to the LSA list using the Exceptional Circumstance Consideration provision. Additional LSAs are expected from other states impacted by recent hurricanes.

The FY 2018 LSA list, Definitions, Frequently Asked Questions and some previous year's LSAs, are in the "Related Link" section. See the Federal Register Notice in the "Related Link" section for "Petition for Exceptional Circumstance Consideration" requirements and instructions.

This year, the LSA list is an Excel file with a filter that allows the user to filter the list by state(s) and/or area type(s). In order to use the filter, the LSA Excel file has to be downloaded and saved to your computer. The following link gives instructions on how to use the filter feature in an Excel file. https://support.office.com/en-us/article/Filter-data-in-a-range-or-table-01832226-31b5-4568-8806-38c37dcc180e

All inquiries concerning the LSA list should be directed to Samuel Wright, email wright.samuel.e@dol.gov or telephone (202) 693-2870.