Last week the state released figures showing four of the 9 counties with the highest unemployment rates in Wisconsin were in this region. This week a Job Fair is being held in Rhinelander to possibly lower those rates.
The Job Fair is co-sponsored by Nicolet Area Technical College, Northern Advantage Job Center and the North Central Wisconsin Workforce Development Board.
One of the organizers is Angeline Kesler from Forward Service Corporation....
A state economist thinks the Northwoods economy will continue to improve. Ken Krall spoke with Department of Workforce Development economist Scott Hodek about the forecast for the next few months.
A report last Friday by BMO Economics held much the same forecast as Hodek. According to the report published by BizTimes.com, real gross domestic product in Wisconsin will increase 2.3 percent in 2014 and rise 2.6 percent in 2015. This is up more than a full percentage point from the 1.2 percent growth rate in 2013, bolstered by firming factory activity and modest export growth.
Forest products industry leaders are voicing concern about a federal plan that could designate a bat species as endangered. The listing could restrict summer logging.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is considering an endangered species listing for the northern long-eared bat, due to dramatic population declines and the spread of a deadly disease called white nose syndrome. But protecting the species could cost the forest products industry.
Federal guidelines to protect the bat discourage some types of summer logging.
An effort that will train high schoolers and entrepreneurs is coming to Three Lakes schools this year.
The Fab Lab concept has been growing across the nation as a way to train people to manufacture goods in their own home, or to work for employers in a new type of manufacturing environment.
WXPR News Director Ken Krall discussed the Fab Lab, the new school curriculum at Three Lakes, and how this idea, brought about by upgraded high speed internet, could make the Northwoods into an new era enterprise zone.
The intense winter weather hurt Northwoods home sales in March, but prices continue to rise. An economist thinks it shows the housing market is recovering.
The Wisconsin Realtors Association monthly sales and price report shows a price rise of 14 percent in the Northwoods from a year ago, but sales were off about 100 units in the 18-county area from a year ago.
Economist David Clark noted the above average price rise here, but said statewide, it was just about 2 percent....
Wisconsin Public Service is retiring a coal fired power plant near Wausau, and switching a second one over to natural gas.
Weston Unit 1 was built in 1954. WPS spokesperson Kerry Spees says the older plant is much less efficient in generating power, and also needs expensive emissions upgrades.
“We would definitely have to do upgrades. We’re in a time it seems when those environmental standards continue to get tighter and tighter. And at a certain point you just have to cut the cord and say there’s no real sense in trying to keep this plant operating.”