The Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) announced today 100,896 laid-off workers filed initial claims for unemployment insurance benefits in December, an increase of 28,598, or 39.6 percent, from 72,298 in November. However, there was a decline of 27,729, or 21.6 percent, from 128,625 claims filed in December 2008, at the depth of the current recession.Monday, Jan. 18, the Georgia Department of Labor will host the Georgia Jobs Summit in Atlanta, to develop a comprehensive strategy to spur private sector job creation and hiring in Georgia. The theme of the Jobs Summit is Shaping Georgia’s Economic Destiny.’This summit will be a bipartisan gathering of some of the brightest minds in our state,’ Thurmond continued. ‘This is a call to action for citizens to exchange ideas and strategies that will help stimulate the state’s job market and shape Georgia’s economic destiny.’ The Jobs Summit will be held from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Georgia Tech Hotel and Conference Center at 800 Spring St. It is open to the public at no charge. Those interested in participating in, or gaining additional information about, the Georgia Jobs Summit may visit www.dol.state.ga.us or email inquiries to email@example.com. Telephone operators are available at 1-877-WORKS09 (1-877-967-5709). Those planning to attend should RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-877-WORKS09 (1-877-967-5709).Most of the first-time claims were filed in manufacturing, trade, construction, and administrative and support services. The average length of time jobless Georgia workers drew UI benefits in December increased to 15.3 weeks, the longest duration on record. The duration in December 2008 was 11.6 weeks. The number of jobless workers receiving regular state unemployment benefits decreased 8,945, or 5.7 percent, from 156,719 in December 2008 to 147,774 in December 2009. Another 184,000 received federal Extended Unemployment Compensation. Georgia labor market data are available at www.dol.state.ga.us.