For Immediate Release: Sept. 16, 2022
Media Contact: Craig.Shaul@labor.idaho.gov or Karen.JarboeSingletary@labor.idaho.gov
Labor force expands by 4% over the year
Idaho’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 2.7% in August, up 0.1 percentage points from July – the seventh consecutive month Idaho has been below 3%.
August’s labor force growth saw increases in both employed and unemployed persons. The number of Idahoans employed or looking for work grew by 4,384 people (0.5%) to 956,785. Total employment grew by 3,103 (0.3%) to 931,077 while total unemployment increased by 1,281 (5.2%) to 25,708.
Labor force participation increased by 0.1 percentage points between July and August to 62.7%. Idaho’s peak participation rate reached 71.4% in September 1998.
Idaho’s nonfarm jobs met seasonal expectations in August, showing an adjusted increase of only 200 jobs to 822,600. Industry sectors with the greatest over-the-month gains include transportation, warehousing and utilities (0.9%); arts, entertainment and recreation (0.6%); and construction (0.5%). Continue reading
For Immediate Release: Sept. 27, 2022
Media Contact: Renee Bade, firstname.lastname@example.org
Serve Idaho Commission Vice Chair Charlette (Char) Kremer of Lewiston recently was named the 2022 Outstanding Commissioner of the year by America’s Service Commissions. The award was presented virtually at the association’s annual Innovation and Leadership Award ceremony Sept. 22.
Kremer was appointed by Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter to serve on the commission in 2014. She previously served as the Director of Lewis-Clark Service Corps, a statewide AmeriCorps program that hosted 120 members who provided tutoring and mentoring across Idaho. An AmeriCorps Volunteer in Service to America alumna, she served from 2005 – 2007 with Lewis-Clark Service Corps where she developed the student volunteer recruitment program and established the Community Warriors Volunteer Center.
For Immediate Release: Sept. 23, 2022
Media Contact: Monico.Sanchez@labor.idaho.gov
Job seekers are invited to kick off the fall hiring season during a career fair scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 28, from 3 to 6 p.m. at the Canyon County Department of Labor office parking lot, 4514 Thomas Jefferson St. in Caldwell.
The first 150 job seekers who show up will have their choice of a free hamburger or cheeseburger courtesy of CS Beef Packers, United States Bakery (Franz) and Sorrento Lactalis Inc.
Other employers attending include the Ada County Sheriff’s Office, Boise State University, EquusWorks, the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, Idaho Milk Transport, Simplot and many more. The employers planning to attend report having more than 500 open jobs to fill. Positions available range from bus drivers, construction workers, direct care providers, machine operators, teachers, welders and more.
For Immediate Release: Sept. 23, 2022
Media Contact: Dan Cabrera, Danilo.Cabrera@labor.idaho.gov
Serve Idaho, the Governor’s Commission on Service and Volunteerism is accepting grant applications for Public Health AmeriCorps programs.
Earlier this year, Public Health AmeriCorps, a $400 million American Rescue Plan partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, was launched as a way to recruit, train and develop of a new generation of public health leaders.
The 2023 grant competition focuses on programs addressing community public health needs, including health inequities made worse by the ongoing pandemic. The competition is open to nonprofit, faith-based, tribal and community-based organizations; higher-education institutions; state, local and territorial government entities; and local public health departments. Organizations that have not yet received AmeriCorps funding are encouraged to apply.
Research has shown volunteers 55 and older who serve as senior companions often find they also reap significant financial and health benefits from the experience.
Idaho’s AmeriCorps Seniors Companion volunteers visit homes, help the person leave the house to go shopping, to doctor appointments and even the senior center for bingo. Volunteers also help with bills, laundry and engage in conversation over a cup of coffee.
According to a study on AmeriCorps senior programs,* benefits for individuals getting assistance include:
- Spending time with others.
- Living in their home.
- Cost of living stays down. The median monthly cost of an assisted living facility is $4,051 compared to the mean monthly housing expenditure of $1,505. Annual cost savings reach $30,552 per person.
- Improved health and decreased hospital visits. The federal government saved nearly $59 million each year on Medicare and Medicaid health care expenditures.
Information provided in these news updates is from professional sources, news releases, weekly and daily newspapers, television and other media.
North Central Idaho
South Central Idaho
NORTHERN IDAHO – Benewah, Bonner, Boundary, Kootenai & Shoshone counties
- The city of Coeur d’Alene is evaluating proposals to strengthen laws against short-term rentals, including civil penalties and dedicated enforcement. The city’s general services and public works committee cites the city’s well established housing crisis and severe shortage of available for-rent and for-sale homes as the need for these proposals. The committee seeks to curb the conversion of long-term rental properties to short-term rentals to combat the housing shortage. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
- Work has begun on a major Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) project to replace and upgrade the interchange between Interstate 90 and State Highway 41 in Post Falls. The current interchange, which includes three different traffic signals and intersections, has become a major traffic bottleneck as Post Falls has grown. The interchange will be replaced by a single intersection, which ITD believes will dramatically increase efficiency. Construction will be underway in phases until the summer of 2025. Source: Idaho Transportation Department
- Kootenai Health has begun work on a $40 million expansion to its Heart Center, operating rooms and Kootenai Outpatient Surgery facilities. The expansion will add 37,000 square feet to the heart center, new laboratories and more patient rooms, which will allow the hospital to provide more same-day surgeries. The project is scheduled for completion in fall 2023. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
- Sebastian’s Coffee and Pastries
- The Burger Dock
- Vantage Point Brewing
- Bare Root Skin Essentials
- Burke’s Restoration, Post Falls
- Club Pilates, Hayden
- Gracie Barra Jiu-Jitsu Studio, Hayden
Sam.Wolkenhauer@labor.idaho.gov, regional economist
(208) 457-8789 ext. 4451
Part five of an explainer series on Idaho’s unemployment insurance (UI) program.
While most discussions about the unemployment insurance benefits program focus on the role as a safety net for individual workers, this is only one of three major purposes it serves. The two others include as an automatic stabilizer for the greater economy during recessions and to preserve the workforces of industries that experience wide annual swings in business due to changes in weather throughout the year.
As an economic stabilizer, unemployment benefits are an insurance policy for the entire economy during recessions or economic disruptions that affect a large number of workers like the Great Recession after the 2008 global financial collapse or shutdowns caused by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
During these types of events, with a large drop in employment and a reduction in economic activity as payrolls diminish and buying is curtailed, there is a risk of a snowball effect and greater economic consequences as businesses suffer from the reduction in demand. The stabilizer effect the unemployment insurance program provides is meant to hedge against greater economic turmoil that could lead to a much deeper and long period of economic decline.
Labor productivity is an important indicator for not just the labor market but Idaho’s overall economy. Wages are closely linked to labor’s marginal product, or the last unit of revenue produced from the last unit of labor employed. When markets are competitive and lack any frictions that impede price adjustments, wage and productivity growth will be equal.
If productivity increases at a high growth rate and appears to continue for the foreseeable future (for example, continued investments in research and development, improved education and workforce training), it might be inferred that wages will grow at a similar pace; if productivity is expected to grow at a negligible rate or decline, however, wages can be expected to move similarly.
The National Institute of Mental Health estimates one in five adults experience mental health issues annually. In the workplace, addressing an employee’s mental health can reduce an employer’s long-term health care expenses and improve employee productivity, morale, retention and aid in an employer’s recruitment efforts of qualified employees. With recent studies showing mental health is declining on a national basis, Idaho is taking broad steps toward addressing this issue directly, but also has many complex challenges in front of it.
As of May 2021, Idaho had approximately 150 psychiatrists and 700 psychologists statewide. By 2030, these occupations are expected to increase 20-25% for psychiatrists to around 200 – a national outlook of growth of 10-15% – and decline slightly for psychologists to between 650-675 – national growth outlook up 5-10%, with the most growth in clinical, counseling and school settings.
What is mental health and why does it matter in the workplace?
Mental health is a combination of emotional, psychological and social factors that influence thoughts, feelings and actions. Positive mental health has been shown to increase concentration and memory, reduce anxiety, strengthen personal relationships, result in more rational and clear thinking and improve self-esteem. When a person’s mental health is out of balance or in a state of crisis, the inability to cope with daily stressors can result in depression, anxiety and mood disorders that reduce productivity, engagement, morale and overall well-being in both personal and professional working relationships.
Twenty-four libraries across Idaho are increasing their resources to offer job seeker services to their nearby rural communities, and the Idaho Commission for Libraries hopes more will participate.
Job seekers in communities like Challis, Priest River, Kuna and New Meadows can now find help with writing resumes, earning their GED, going back to school and on-the-job training – all at their local library. Continue reading