County's jobless rate drops to 5 percent
Countys unemployment rate is the lowest it has been in several years according to
recently released numbers from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.
County Economic Development Office Executive Director Andy Lofgren reported that, through
the end of October, unemployment is at just five percent and is tied for the 11th best
rate in the state.
that long ago, in 2010, we ranked 37th in the state out of 83 counties, Lofgren
said. At that time, our unemployment rate was 12.5 percent, so we are very pleased
with these numbers and it is a reflection of the positive job growth that we have seen for
the past four years.
added that Newaygo County is well ahead of both the US rate (5.7 percent) and the overall
State of Michigan rate of 6.4 percent.
explained that these numbers are cyclical, so they must be viewed relative to a larger
time-frame, but that they have been trending downward for the past few years.
started the year 2010 at 15.7 percent unemployment, Lofgren said, so to be
sitting at just five percent today is a huge improvement.
It also speaks very well of the many employers throughout the county who
were dedicated to doing what it took to provide and keep jobs for area residents.
and increasing job opportunities is an ongoing effort among county and township
governments, area employers, legislators and NCEDO. Lofgren
said that, for instance, over the past 14 years Newaygo County manufacturers have invested
more than $308 million in the local economy in the form of improvements to plants and
It is a constant effort on the part of a lot of people to grow and keep jobs in
any location, Lofgren said. We are thrilled to see these numbers so low, but
that doesnt mean that anybody can relax. We will continue to work together to seize
every opportunity to make Newaygo County an appealing place to live and work.
Shopping with Ken... By
Crunch time for the local shopper
a few days remaining now, and those of us who have yet to truly embark on any kind of
concerted effort toward completion of any gifting obligations are either beginning to feel
just a tad more than a little anxious, or we are steeped in a deep ditch of denial.
little time is left, and even less is available to you. After all, there are the demands
of your job and the various commitments inherent to this time of year with work, friend or
family parties. The drive to GR or Muskegon on a weekend has little appeal and joining in
on the close-to-Christmas crush of like-minded citizenry inhabiting the large-scale stores
and parking lots that surround them does little to whet the Christmas spirit.
my friend, if uninitiated to the concept of shopping local, are in for a rather
life-altering experience should you choose to follow the advice of the wizened (see old)
Shopping with Ken staff and security force.
has books, art works, jerky and other fun meats, a wide span of clothing from casual to
active wear to funky and fashionable, fishing and hunting gear, fabric and fiber, and
is filled with opportunities up and down the main drag, from downtown to the west end.
Gently used items and collectibles abound, clothing and quilting options are available,
and an entire venue is dedicated to local artists creations and, of course, that old
standby for those looking for the Wow factor: jewelry.
of tools, hardware, items for the home? These towns as well as Grant,
boast fine establishments of this ilk.
county has a wealth of eating establishments that welcome the purchase of gift
certificates. From the Red Anchor, Hit The Road Joe and Northern Trails west to Spankys,
Seasons and Loco Burrito. From The Old Iron Bar and Grill and The Depot north through City
Limits and the Riverstop, past Sallys then on to Abners and many more in
between, the possibilities are plentiful.
is about giving you the chance to do your present purchasing with minimal investment of
your most precious commodity, time, and all the while supporting the enterprises that help
bring distinctiveness and diversity to our splendid area. These are the same businesses
who help drive our local economy and create a ripple effect benefiting our schools, public
services, non-profits and philanthropic organizations.
with less than a week left and so many things on your personal agenda, give Shop Local a
try. You will not be sorry you did, and it may alter your shopping habits for years to
Local, Be Local
Look for the Bounty
our Fair County.