Monthly Archives: April 2019

Idaho Construction Employment Building Back to Pre-Recession Level

The level of construction activity is one of many indicators that signal the health of an economy. Currently, Idaho’s scenery is dotted with construction projects ranging from heavy construction infrastructure ventures to commercial buildings to single- and multi-family homes and residential housing projects.

This was not the case after the Great Recession (December 2007 to June 2009) squelched Idaho’s strong housing industry, resulting in a loss of almost 23,000 jobs based on quarterly employer reports to the Idaho Department of Labor. Construction was one of the hardest hit industries during that time and continues to rebuild in all six Idaho regions.

Idaho’s construction industry has grown by 127 percent from 1991-2018. It has experienced more periods of growth than downturns in jobs since 1991, as shown in Chart 1.

Continue reading

Job Fair Focuses on Job Seekers with Disabilities


For Immediate Release: April 22, 2019
Information Contact: Stacey Hanlon (208) 457-8789 ext. 3947

The Idaho Department of Labor Discovery Job Fair will be held May 1, 2019, 10 a.m. to noon, at the Kootenai County Department of Labor local office, 600 N. Thornton St. in Post Falls. The event is tailored specifically for job seekers with disabilities.

Employers recruiting at the Discovery Job Fair currently employ people with disabilities or are open to hiring from this pool of job seekers.

Job applicants are encouraged to bring a resume, dress to meet potential employers and be prepared to speak directly with company recruiters and HR personnel. The event is free to attend.

Businesses interested in recruiting at this event and customers with disabilities who need a reasonable accommodation to participate can contact Stacey Hanlon at (208) 457-8789 ext. 3947. To access the Idaho Relay Service for the deaf and hard of hearing, dial 711.

Interviewing tips from the Department of Labor are online at

— end –

Idaho’s March Unemployment Rate Unchanged at 2.9 Percent


For Immediate Release: April 19, 2019
Information Contact: Craig Shaul (208) 332-3570 ext. 3201 or Karen Jarboe Singletary (208) 332-3570 ext. 3215

Third Fastest Rate in the Nation for Over-the-Year Job Growth

Idaho’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for March remained steady at 2.9 percent, the 16th consecutive month at or below 3 percent.

An additional 1,737 people entered the labor force from February to March, a slight 0.2 percent increase that pushed Idaho’s seasonally adjusted labor force number up to 868,263. The number of unemployed increased by 141, or 0.6 percent, to 24,918. Total employment increased by 1,596, up 0.2 percent to 843,345.

Idaho’s labor force participation rate – the percentage of people age 16 years or older working or looking for work – increased one tenth of a percent to 63.9 percent.

Continue reading

Explore Career Opportunities in Variety of Industries at April 30 Expo


For Immediate Release: April 18, 2019
Information Contact: Vicki Raass, (208) 364-7781 ext 3876

Representatives from several industries will be on hand at the Ford Idaho Center in Nampa on April 30, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., to give young people and other job seekers information about different careers available in the area.

Explore Your Future career expo provides a behind-the-scenes look at local businesses and highlights careers in health care, public safety, IT, aerospace, transportation, manufacturing, construction, agriculture, military, energy and many more.

Continue reading

Hiring Workers with Disabilities Topic of Luncheon Meeting April 18


For Immediate Release: April 11, 2019
Information Contact: Amy Reynolds, (208) 415-5406

Presentation Prepares Businesses for May 1 Job Fair

The Human Resource Network of North Idaho is hosting an April 18 employer luncheon to address hiring people with disabilities. Discussion will focus on labor laws and how they apply to hiring and accommodating workers with disabilities.

Hiring Employees with Disabilities luncheon meeting will be held April 18 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Best Western Coeur d’Alene Inn at 506 W. Appleway Ave.

The goal of this presentation is to review compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and to encourage and prepare businesses to participate in the Discovery Job Fair May 1 at the Idaho Department of Labor Kootenai County local office.

Luncheon speakers will include Benjamin Earwicker, Ph.D., administrator, Idaho Human Rights Commission; Kara Heikkila, employment attorney with Witherspoon Kelley; Cameron Cushing, vocational rehabilitation specialist, Idaho Division of Vocational Rehabilitation; Terri Johnson , vice president, Tesh; and Theresa Moran, special education instructor, Project SEARCH.

For more information and to register for the luncheon, visit

Businesses interested in recruiting at the May 1 Discovery Job Fair can contact Stacey Hanlon at the Idaho Department of Labor, (208) 457-8789, ext. 3947 or

For more information about the job fair, see the Idaho Department of Labor online calendar.


Six Reasons to Register Your Idaho Apprenticeship 

USDOL Registered Apprenticeships have an advantage over non-registered programs and benefit job seekers and employers as follows:

  1. National Credential – Registered Apprenticeship graduates receive a national, industry-recognized credential that is portable and stackable.
  2. Quality Standards – Registration means the program meets national and independent standards for quality and rigor. Registration tells prospective employees, customers and suppliers a business invests in its workforce and believes employees are its most important asset.
  3. High Quality and Safe Working Conditions – Emphasis on program safety may reduce worker compensation costs.
  4. Technical Assistance and Support – Businesses that register their apprenticeship programs with USDOL receive access to a nationwide network of expertise, customer service and support at no charge for program sponsors.
  5. Tax Credits – In some states, businesses qualify for state-based tax credits related to apprenticeship programs. Employers may also be able to claim some expenses for training as a federal tax credit.
  6. Federal Resources – Businesses and apprentices can access funding and other resources from many federal programs to help support their Registered Apprenticeship programs, including Pell Grants and the GI Bill.

Contact Bill Kober, (208) 321-2973 or (208) 703-3782 for more information.

– Idaho Department of Labor

Rural Idaho Seeks Apprentices for Maintaining Sewer, Water Systems

Safe, plentiful and affordable drinking water, environmentally sound wastewater treatment, and the people who maintain the systems – are some of Idaho’s most precious resources and something many people take for granted.

“We are encouraging our 120 members to plan for the future,” explained Kelsie Cole, apprenticeship coordinator for the Idaho Rural Water Association. “More than half the professionals who oversee or operate Idaho’s drinking water and wastewater facilities are within 10 years or less of retirement. One-third are more than 55 years old. Another 30 percent are over age 45.”

Cole’s job is to meet the demand for future operators by pairing quality job candidates with a new statewide apprenticeship program involving 120 Idaho cities and communities that operate drinking water and wastewater systems throughout the state.

The Association is using a $30,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Labor to recruit job candidates interested in a career managing Idaho’s drinking water or wastewater systems. What they need is more Idaho cities and communities willing to step up and offer the on-the-job training component of the apprenticeship program.

Continue reading

Around Idaho: Economic Activity in March 2019

Information provided in this article is from professional sources, news releases, weekly and daily newspapers, television and other media.

Northern Idaho
North Central Idaho
Southwestern Idaho
South Central Idaho
Eastern Idaho


NORTHERN IDAHO – Benewah, Bonner, Boundary, Kootenai & Shoshone counties

Kootenai County

  • Medical services continue to expand in Kootenai County. Inland Northwest Therapy, a pediatric physical, speech and occupational therapy clinic, is opening a new location in Post Falls. Resilience Psychiatric Medicine is also opening a new facility in Coeur d’Alene. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
  • Hospice of North Idaho has started construction on a $1.8 million expansion to its inpatient facilities to help meet Kootenai County’s growing need for end-of-life care. The expansion will add patient rooms and additional space for families, and it is expected to be completed by September. Source: Spokane Journal of Business
  • Coeur d’Alene City officials are working with the Idaho Transportation Department to rework traffic signaling on key transit corridors. Traffic congestion in Coeur d’Alene has increased substantially as the population has grown, and city officials believe that turning control of the signaling over to ITD will help alleviate congestion. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
  • After failing to find a buyer, Shopko announced it will be closing all of its remaining stores over the summer, and the closure of its Coeur d’Alene location is now slated for June 16. The Coeur d’Alene Shopko was initially not on the company’s closure list when it announced a restructuring plan in January. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
  • Viking Builders will construct a new subdivision in Hayden. The new development will include 52 single-family homes on a 20 acre parcel, in addition to lots for commercial space. Construction will begin after the completion of a new sewer lift station this spring. (Source: Coeur d’Alene Press), regional economist
Idaho Department of Labor
(208) 457-8789 ext. 4451

Continue reading