Dayton region saw huge spike in jobs. But don’t celebrate yet.

Dayton auto parts manufacturer MAHLE Behr has about 1,600 workers at its plant at 1600 Webster St. STAFF

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Dayton auto parts manufacturer MAHLE Behr has about 1,600 workers at its plant at 1600 Webster St. STAFF

The Dayton region added 4,900 jobs in August, according to preliminary federal labor data, which is the most explosive month of payroll growth in 20 years.

Non-farm employment in the Dayton metro area increased by 1.3 percent in the last full month of summer, which is the second-most robust month of job growth since at least 1990, the data show.

MORE: Dayton metro job growth rate best in Ohio: Wages a problem

But there’s one caveat. The data are preliminary and almost certainly will be revised when September’s job numbers are released.

Dayton officials and leaders this week were impressed by August’s number — which was illustrated by a sharp spike on a line graph shared during the city commission’s monthly finance committee briefing.

Officials are crossing their fingers that the upcoming revision won’t be too severe. But they had other reasons to celebrate, including very strong revenue growth.

“Our economic indicators continue to show well for the region,” said Dayton City Manager Shelley Dickstein.

MORE: Dayton beats Ohio’s big cities in job growth

Employers in the metro area in August added 4,900 jobs, which is the largest increase since August 1998 (8,200 jobs), according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The metro area consists of Greene, Miami and Montgomery counties.

To put the data in perspective, there have been only nine months since January 1990 in which the month-to-month payroll growth exceeded 2,000 workers.

August also ended a three-month slide in payrolls. The region lost 1,000 jobs in July, 1,300 jobs in June and 1,700 jobs in May.

The region’s employment in August stood at 394,900 jobs, the highest level since December 2006, the preliminary data indicate.

“That’s up 5,300 jobs” from August 2017, said Diane Shannon, Dayton’s director of procurement, management and budget.

The numbers are preliminary and will be revised, but they are encouraging and provide a “pulse” of the economy, she said. Dayton accounts for about 25 percent of the job base in the three-county metro area, she said.

“We are the job center,” she said. “We are the big player there.”

Other good news was highlighted during the finance committee meeting.

Through the end of August, the city of Dayton’s revenues are up 4.5 percent ($5.2 million) compared to 2017.

Income tax collections are the big driver of the growth. They are up 6.5 percent year to date, which is $4.1 million more than the city’s forecast.

August’s net collections rose 8.6 percent compared to August 2017, and September has closed and “the number is good,” Shannon said.

Withholding taxes for the year are up 6.1 percent (or $4.5 million), which represent jobs in the city, Shannon said.

Dayton’s income tax revenue growth rate has been higher than some other local cities (Vandalia, Riverside), but lower than others (Centerville, Kettering, Springfield).

Dayton’s income tax growth rate has bested Akron, Hamilton, Columbus and Toledo.

Dayton considered only the baseline rates for Springfield and Akron, because they increased their earnings taxes.

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