The latest numbers from the NC Employment Security Commission reveal that unemployment rates rose in 76 of North Carolina’s 100 counties in May, fell in 21 and were unchanged in three. When compared to the same month last year, unemployment rates declined in 88 counties, increased in eight, and remained the same in four. North Carolina had 33 counties that were at or below the state’s non seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 9.4 percent. Locally, the unemployment rates improved with the exception of Madison County which remained unchanged at 9.4 percent. The rate in Avery County fell from 11.8 percent to 11.4 percent. Mitchell County also saw its unemployment rate fall from 11.6 percent to 11.3 percent as did Yancey County, falling from 12.2 to 10.5 percent. Labor force estimates show 7,931 people in the labor force in Avery County and a total of 905 unemployed, a workforce of 10,238 in Madison County with 949 in the ranks of the unemployed, Mitchell County reported a workforce of 7,025 with 792 unemployed people while Yancey County’s workforce stood at 8,038 with 841 listed as unemployed.