Idaho Department of Labor

LM Otero / AP Images

Since millions nationwide lost jobs in the first days of the pandemic, Idaho has had one of the best unemployment recoveries of any state. Thousands of people do remain unemployed in Idaho, but as Boise State Public Radio’s Troy Oppie recently discovered, many of them have not been counted in the state’s weekly unemployment report.

neetalparekh / Flickr Creative Commons

Idaho has maintained one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country throughout the pandemic, but the state's weekly jobless reports have only partially included a key indicator of recovery.


James Dawson / Boise State Public Radio

The Idaho Department of Labor took months to work through tens of thousands of unemployment claims from laid off workers that were languishing in a state of limbo through the spring and into the summer

But even as it was trudging through its backlog, the department was also trying to claw back money it had paid out to hundreds of university employees who were furloughed, creating a bureaucratic headache for those involved. 

Troy Oppie / Boise State Public Radio

 

Nearly 109,000 Idahoans have applied for initial unemployment since mid-March, according to the latest statistics from the Idaho Department of Labor. Thirteen thousand initial unemployment claims were made last week, a 30% drop from the prior week but still 12 times higher than last year’s average.

Applications for unemployment insurance in Idaho are up thirteen hundred percent from just last week. Molly Wampler has more on how the Idaho Department of Labor is addressing this growing need.

 


Jacquelyn Hanners / City Club of Boise

The City Club of Boise welcomed a curious audience to learn about efforts to develop a skilled labor force in Idaho.  For years, industry and the trades have recognized that a shortage of skilled laborers is coming. Many of our skilled workforce are aging out of their professions and young people have generally not been encouraged to view the trades as a viable, well paying career. If this trend cannot be reversed the economic impacts could be devastating.

 


On The Monday, June 3, 2019 Edition Of Idaho Matters

May 31, 2019

  • Protecting the health and rights of Idaho's seasonal agricultural workers.
  • Author Roger McNamee breaks down the myth of Mark Zuckerberg.
  • Summer roadway projects from IDT.
  • Ballet Sun Valley welcomes San Francisco Ballet to the Wood River Valley.

Heath Druzin / Boise State Public Radio

Depending on where you live in Idaho, the average age of your neighbors will vary. One of our Wanna Know Idaho podcast listeners wanted to know more about the age of folks in the West Central Mountains. Below is a snapshot of what we learned. To learn more about the forces at work with the average age of folks in the West Central Mountains, listen to the full episode here

IIP Photo Archive / Flickr

New data from the Idaho Department of Labor shows a continuing decline in the state’s unemployment rate.


Matt Guilhem / Boise State Public Radio

Data from the U.S. Census Bureau shows the influx of people flocking to the Gem State boosting populations – and changing the fortunes – of a majority of Idaho’s cities. However, smaller communities aren’t seeing the same spikes.

City of Meridian, Idaho - Government / Facebook

One Idaho town is among the fastest-growing communities in the nation. That’s just one finding in the latest release of data from the U.S. Census Bureau.


Scott Lowe / Flickr

The Idaho Department of Labor is out with its latest monthly jobs report. It finds the state’s unemployment rate has held steady for half a year.

Idaho Unemployment Rate At Record Low

Oct 20, 2017
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Idaho’s unemployment rate has plummeted seven straight months to a record low in September. The state’s unemployment rate is 2.8 percent – the lowest it’s been since the statistic started being tracked in 1976.


Ken Edmunds, Idaho Department of Labor
State of Idaho

Tuesday the head of the Idaho Department of Labor resigned from his job, effective immediately. Ken Edmunds has faced a handful of scandals while at the helm.

Jimmy Emerson / Flickr Creative Commons

The Idaho Department of Labor says between 2015 and 2025, the state is expected to grow by 15 percent.

Using a new model to project these changes, the agency says the state’s pace is about three times higher than the nation’s when it comes to population.

So where is this boost coming from? The trend of older people moving to the state for retirement continues to lead the way. The department predicts the 65 and older crowd will grow by about 36 percent.

Brian Klug / Flickr

 UPDATE March 24: The Idaho Department of Labor says America's Job Link will offer victims a year of credit monitoring services.

The Department of Labor has set up a phone number for victims who have questions. That number is 1-844-469-3939.

ORIGINAL STORY: The Idaho Department of Labor says around 170,000 of the department's 530,000 job-seeker accounts have been hacked.

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House lawmakers have killed legislation allowing FBI background checks on some state employees despite warnings from the bill's sponsor that doing so will cause the state to lose critical federal funding.

The proposal would have allowed the Department of Labor to conduct FBI fingerprint-based background checks on employees, applicants, contractors, interns and other. The federal government requires the checks for any employee who handles confidential taxpayer information.

Rachel La Corte / AP Images

Between July 2015 and July 2016 the state grew by more than 30,000 people. That's according to the latest census data, and is the biggest increase since 2008.

The 1.8 percent gain comes from people who moved to the Gem State from other parts of the country, and from babies born in Idaho. The state is fifth when it comes to in-migration and seventh for births. Utah topped the list for growth by percentage, followed by Nevada. Other western states like Washington, Oregon, Colorado and Arizona also made it in the top-10 list.  

Idaho Weekly Wages On The Rise, Still Lag Nationally

Dec 20, 2016
money, dollars, wages
401(K)2013 / Flickr Creative Commons

Weekly wages in Idaho’s private sector are on the rise, according to a recent report out by the state’s Department of Labor.

Weekly earnings have increased by $30 from the second quarter of 2015 to the second quarter of this year, according to the report.

The 4.2 percent growth rate that’s pushed the weekly wage up to 743 dollars is double the national average. Robust growth like that puts Idaho in fourth place nationally for over-the-year wage growth.

Adelpha Photography/Flickr

Idaho’s Hispanic population is growing. That’s according to the Idaho Department of Labor.

Using Census Bureau numbers, the department found that the Hispanic population grew 2.9 percent between mid-2014 and mid-2015. That’s an increase of 5,696.

Janell Hyer is a research analyst at the Labor Department. She says Idaho’s Hispanic population went up 15.1 percent since the 2010 census.

“We added over 26,000 Hispanics to our community and living in this area you’re seeing more and more commercial businesses that are targeting Hispanics.”

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