Economy

Economy, Business, Finance & Labor

Meyer Memorial Trust

One of the largest private foundations in Oregon awarded over $9.5 million dollars in February alone. Starting today, the Meyer Memorial Trust is suspending its programs to refocus its giving.

The Meyer Memorial Trust was created in 1982 by the estate of grocery magnate Fred Meyer, but is not connected to the grocery store. Kimberly Wilson is with the Trust. She says the seven-nine month hiatus will help the organization be more directed:

Oregon Employment Reaches a New High

Mar 3, 2015
www.purdue.edu

Jobs are on the rise in Oregon. Unemployment is on the decline. That’s the takeaway from State Employment Department’s just-issued January report. 

Oregon employment reached a record level in January, with more than 55 thousand jobs above a year ago. State Employment Economist Nick Beleiciks:

(Beleiciks)  “The sectors that added the most jobs were the broad ranging professional and business services, manufacturing, retail trade and construction.”

Oregon Labor Commissioner Endorses Sick Leave Bills

Feb 17, 2015

Legislation that would ensure all working Oregonians access to paid sick leave received endorsement Monday from the State's labor commissioner.  The State Senate and House are both considering bills that would allow workers to accrue one hour of sick time for every 30 hours worked.  This would max out at about seven days a year. Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian:

Emerald People's Utility District

The Emerald People's Utility District is raising its rates effective April first. Like many utilities in the northwest, it's paying more for electricity and receiving less income from selling surplus power.

The state, universities and local governments have invested in startup companies through the Oregon RAIN program. A cohort of five new businesses in Corvallis has just graduated.

The OSU Advantage Accelerator has been around since the summer of 2013. Mark Lieberman is co-director. He says over time, they’ve made the program more formal and rigorous:

Lieberman: “Entrepreneurship is generally a marathon and not a sprint, but the acceleration program is to get them to the starting line and that is truly a sprint.”

Caregivers at a non-profit that runs group homes around the state began mediation today (Monday). The Lane County union is concerned about job cuts, while administrators say their numbers are sufficient. The employees held a rally this (Monday) morning in Eugene.

Albertina Kerr is based in Portland. It serves youth and adults with developmental disabilities and mental health issues. The Eugene office employs about 65 care givers. With the Raging Grannies singing in the background, union president Linda Peterson says staffing issues are more important than salary:

oregon.gov

Millions of Americans will be participating in Super Bowl parties today. During the match between the Seattle Seahawks and the New England Patriots, many viewers will be drinking their favorite craft beer, and there's a good chance it's from Oregon. The State has become known for its micro-brew around the world including markets such as Europe, Asia, and Australia. Oregon Department of Agriculture Trade Manager Amanda Welker says big name beers are on the decline.

Unemployment Rates Drop In Oregon Counties

Jan 26, 2015

Unemployment rates fell in the month of December for several Oregon counties. Recent numbers show Lane County's rate at six point seven percent, Deschutes at seven point six percent and Douglas at nine point three percent.

Deschutes and Douglas rates remain well above the statewide average. Regional Labor Economist Brian Rooney explains why:

oregon.gov

The Oregon Department of Agriculture is recommending changes to water supply levels, access to markets, and more pressure on Congress to pass immigration reform. It's all in the ODA's recently completed biennial report for the governor. Steve Van Mouwerik is the Board of Agriculture Chair.

Karen Richards

Governor John Kitzhaber visited Springfield today to tour the fire-devastated Swanson Mill and announced state help to rebuild it.

The plywood and veneer mill was destroyed last July in a massive fire, the cause of which is still unknown. The 33-acre site is now largely reduced to level concrete. Mayor Christine Lundberg says the blaze devastated the community:

Lundberg: “We lost not only an employer but we lost employees to the community so we’re enormously excited that Swanson has been able to see that this is the best site for them to rebuild.”

Pages