Tag Archives: rural Idaho jobs

Government Jobs Promote Economic Health in Rural Idaho

One in eight Idahoans who live in a rural area works for the federal, state or local government, not including education.

For some rural communities, government jobs are essential for their economic health and offset increases in low-paying, service-oriented jobs. Many government jobs pay higher average wages and attract a skilled and educated workforce. Additionally, since the vast majority of government wages flow into a community from outside sources, these jobs function as a source of basic income for rural economies, creating wealth inside the community rather than simply recirculating it, as many service jobs do.

Compared with the seven urban counties in Idaho, the share of jobs in government is greater in the rural area of every region except south central Idaho.

When looking at the share of wages flowing into the community from state, federal and local governments, wages in every region except the rural areas of south central and southeastern are greater than the share of government employment. In other words, looking at employment number alone understates the importance of these jobs, but because almost 85 percent of these wages come from state or federal sources, these wages serve as an economic base similar to a mine or paper mill.

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Tips For Finding Livable Wage Jobs in Rural Idaho

Are you one of the thousands of people living in scenic north central Idaho? 

sara espeland

Sara Espeland

Those of us lucky enough to call this area home understand the struggles of finding a livable wage job in rural Idaho. People who live here want to stay and finding a job that can support a household is not easy.

That said, it is possible to find meaningful work in rural areas of our state. And after matching job seekers with rural Idaho employers for more than six years, I have these tips to share:

Research your local employers. Happy employees reflect good employers. Talk with your friends, family, congregation and neighbors. Learn which employers are valued as “the best in your community.” Spend time researching jobs on the Idaho Department of Labor website, too. You can learn about local labor markets and which employers pay the wages you seek.
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