May was another terrible month for new contracts in the state of Georgia, according to the latest information from McGraw-Hill Construction, publisher of Southeast Construction. The company reported that the overall value of new Georgia contracts signed in May for future construction fell 56% compared to the same period of a year ago. That was on par with the previous month, when new contracts slid 57%. The total value of new contracts for the month was $842.5 million, compared to last May’s total of more than $1.9 billion.

All three markets measured by McGraw-Hill Construction again showed steep declines. The residential category once again fell the most, dropping 66% compared to last year, for a total of about $274.1 million. That compares to last year’s total of nearly $807.3 million for residential.

The nonresidential category dropped 46% to total $428.5 million for the month. Last May, nonresidential contracts totaled nearly $792 million.

The nonbuilding sector, which includes infrastructure projects, declined 57% to total nearly $139.9 million. A year ago, the nonbuilding category totaled $321.8 million.

For the year to date, Georgia activity is now 51% behind the first five months of 2008, with approximately $4 billion in new contracts so far, compared to the nearly $8.1 billion at the same time last year. The nonresidential sector is 47% behind the 2008 pace, with about $2 billion in new contracts so far. Residential is 61% behind last year’s pace, with $1.2 billion in new contracts. The nonbuilding market is 35% behind last year, with a $771.4-million total.