Labor demand in northern Idaho remains robust, with elevated levels of unfilled jobs. There were 2,674 job postings in northern Idaho in April 2023, according to data from the Conference Board — 2,342 in Kootenai County. The most in-demand occupation was registered nurses, followed by a variety of high-turnover and common service sector positions.
Post Falls-based Prairie Falls Golf Club began construction on a new 43,000-square-foot facility that will be the new home of the club’s pro shop, a hotel, event center, retail and restaurant facilities. The new facility is scheduled to open in July, and the golf club will be hiring 40 additional employees. Source: Journal of Business
Beacon Cancer Care is expanding its services with the addition of a new rheumatology practice in its Coeur d’Alene Chinook Medical Campus. Source: Journal of Business
A new urban development is being built in Post Falls. The 32-acre Millworx development will feature 685 residential units in addition to over 100,000 square feet of commercial space. The project has expanded significantly after it was originally envisioned as a 120-unit development in 2022. The development will also include a Hyatt Place Hotel and a variety of retail and restaurant establishments. Source: Journal of Business
Construction of a new 18-story high rise condominium in downtown Coeur d’Alene is underway. Named the Thomas George Building, the building will be home to 60 luxury condominiums and offer views of Lake Coeur d’Alene. Source: Journal of Business
The Idaho Transportation Department has begun its first full season of construction on the planned four-year revision of the critical interchange between Interstate 90 and State Route 41. After preparatory work began in August of last year, the crews in the 2023 season will focus on building three new bridges for westbound I-90. The project is scheduled to be completed by summer Source: Journal of Business
Labor demand in northern Idaho remains robust, with elevated levels of unfilled jobs. All told, there were 1,843 unique job postings in northern Idaho in February 2023, according to data from The Conference Board, with 1,547 posted in Kootenai County. The most in-demand occupation by far was registered nurses, followed by a variety of high-turnover and common service sector positions.
Top 10 occupations by job postings in northern Idaho, February 2023
Source: Conference Board data via Lightcast (formerly EMSI-Burning Glass)
Bonner General Hospital will end its labor and delivery services in the coming months, citing physician turnover and staffing shortages as reason. In 2022, 265 babies were delivered at Bonner General. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
The Coeur d’Alene City Council is annexing a 440-acre parcel of county land, which will be zoned residential and commercial and developed as Coeur Terre. The development, which will be built out over multiple decades, is expected to eventually include 2,800 housing units, retail and restaurant areas, 18 acres of parks, and land for two public schools. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
Several new health care facilities are under construction in Hayden. A two-story building for the future Hayden Surgery Center is now in progress, and Orthopedic Surgery and Sports Medicine is building a new location in Hayden as well. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
Medical Massage, Coeur d’Alene
Fit Body Boot Camp, Coeur d’Alene
Northwest Urgent Care & Occupational Medicine, Athol
Kootenai Health is opening a new urgent care clinic in Coeur d’Alene in partnership with the MultiCare Health System’s Indigo Urgent Care network. In 2022, Kootenai Urgent Care had more than 55,000 visits across its three locations. The new clinic will help distribute the caseload and reduce wait times. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
Hayden Canyon Charter school has completed a major expansion project which doubled the available space in the school. The charter school has seen a large increase in applications in recent years and has had student counts limited by available classrooms. The new expansion will increase the capacity by up to 100 incoming first and second grade students, bringing the school’s total capacity up to nearly 600 students. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
North Idaho College (NIC) received a downgrade in its bond ratings from Moody’s Investor Service amid ongoing questions about the college’s accreditation status and governance ambiguity. NIC’s issuer rating was downgraded from A3 to A1, and the revenue bond rating was dropped from A3 to A2. Moody’s cited “a continuing period of significant governance and management dysfunction.” Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
The Idaho Department of Lands purchased 18,050 acres of timberland spread around the five northern Idaho counties. The land, acquired for $50.4 million, will support state endowment beneficiaries, especially Idaho’s public schools, and boost long-term timber sales. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
Great Homes of Idaho is now operating in Post Falls. A builder of manufactured and modular homes, Great Homes started in Missoula and has now expanded to northern Idaho. This new supply of affordable housing is greatly desirable, with Kootenai County experiencing serious shortages of workforce housing. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
The Coeur d’Alene Airport is evaluating adding a commercial terminal. The current proposal would permit Avports, an airport operations management firm based in Virginia, to construct a new terminal, which would service commercial flights connecting northern Idaho to regional locations like Boise and Seattle. A measure is currently before the Kootenai County Board of Commissioners which would approve a 25-year lease for the project. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
The Hayden City Council denied a zoning amendment which would have allowed for a new subdivision to be built on the arterial Ramsey and Hayden intersection. Council members cited serious traffic concerns. The city’s capital improvement plan has already identified the intersection as a priority for improvement. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
Northern Idaho ended the year with labor demand still at elevated levels amid pressing labor shortages. Job posting data from The Conference Board’s Help Wanted OnLine data series showed nearly 21,000 job postings in the Coeur d’Alene metro area in 2022 – a significant increase over past years. The year ended with over 3,500 unfilled jobs in the region.
A 26,000-square-foot facility for Hayden Surgery Center is under construction in Hayden. The facility will include an orthopedic urgent care, physical therapy office and an outpatient surgery center with four operating rooms. The surgery center is scheduled to open in September.
A study by Idaho Department of Labor economist Matthew Paskash analyzes the impact of COVID-19 on health care workers by comparing pre-pandemic, current and projected data in the areas of employment and wages, job postings, health care program completions and Idaho Department of Labor occupational and industry projections. The study also examines additional insights from stakeholder interviews and a survey of health care workers.
This analysis concludes with an anticipated near-to-medium-term outlook of shortages of health care practitioners in Idaho. To combat these shortages, the state may explore efforts in attracting health care workers, expanding education and training programs, and stemming the outflow of health care practitioners to other states.
BNSF Railways opened its Sandpoint Junction Connector bridge nearly a year ahead of schedule and began running traffic across the bridge. The new bridge adds a second line across Lake Pend Oreille, addressing a critical transit bottleneck where multiple lines converge before crossing the lake. Source: CDA Press
A new preschool is under construction in Coeur d’Alene. Phase one construction of the Kinder Prep Learning Center is underway with a spring opening planned. The preschool will care for children ages 18 months to 5 years old. Kootenai County currently has substantial shortages of childcare availability. Source: CDA Press
A 20,000-square-foot professional building is under construction in Coeur d’Alene. The Prairie Professional building will offer suite sizes ranging from 2,200 to 10,000 square feet. The project is slated for completion in December 2023. Source: CDA Press
The city of Coeur d’Alene is exploring grant options to help pay for new mooring docks at the city’s popular Third Street docks. The current docks were installed in 2000 and have cost the city nearly $100,000 in repairs due to rotting timbers. The city Parks and Recreation Department is exploring a $500,000 project to replace the current timber docks with composite materials. Source: CDA Press
A 27,000-square-foot surgical facility is being built in Hayden. The Hayden Surgery Center will provide outpatient and orthopedic surgery, physical therapy and minor emergency services. Source: Journal of Business
North Idaho College’s Dental Hygiene program opened a new community dental clinic on the college’s main campus. The clinic will offer low-cost dental cleanings while helping dental hygiene students complete their clinicals to become register hygienists. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
The North Idaho State Fair concluded its 10-day run with a record attendance. The fair saw 168,567 guests – a 9% increase from attendance in 2021. Source: Coeur d’Alene Press
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
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.