Most people would probably agree that one of the key public problems this fall—for the last several years, really—is the scarcity of jobs. To size up the local prognosis, today’s show interviews Rick Reed. He has surveyed area employers several times a year since 1992 for what is now a quarterly employment forecast, the Pacific Staffing Employment Trends Survey. He last appeared on Davisville a year ago, when he correctly forecast job growth for the region. According to the California Employment Development Department, the Davis unemployment rate was 6.7% in July, down from 7.6% in summer 2011; Yolo’s rate was 10.5%, down from 11.8%; and regional unemployment was 10.7%, down from 12.3%. Of course, those numbers are still much worse than they were in 2006. On today’s show we discuss why the job market has improved since 2011, plus the most promising sectors for growth. Reed also looks ahead. ... “There is an optimism among employers that there wasn’t, even a year ago. People are looking at hiring greater numbers of people, they’ve seen that they can only push the current workforce to so much productivity, and it starts to become counterproductive,” Reed says. "I don’t expect it’s going to be any boom. … we need to be patient, we need to look at the long term. In the long run, we’re going to be in great shape. It’s going to be an uphill climb."