The lure of thousands of jobs in the fledgling Massachusetts gaming industry is powerful in the greater Springfield area, where unemployment remains high. One of the companies competing for the lone casino license available in western Massachusetts is holding a career fair to show off the types of jobs being promised.
There is great uncertainty about the impact the federal budget cuts, through the process known as sequestration, will have on the Massachusetts economy. But regional economists remain cautiously optimistic, according to an analysis released this week.
New statistics released this week by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show that from June 2011 to June 2012 Saratoga County experienced the largest employment growth in New York State at 3.1 percent, with strong job growth in manufacturing and leisure and hospitality.
WAMC’s Patrick Donges spoke with Saratoga County Board of Supervisors Chairman Alan Grattidge for his reaction to the positive numbers
According to state officials in Massachusetts, the unemployment rose to 6.7% in December, and for the Berkshires, the unemployment rate is now above the state average.
Although the numbers released by the State Executive Office of Labor and Workforce development are not seasonally adjusted, the Berkshires now face an unemployment rate at 6.6% That’s up half a percentage point from October and November, and the highest it’s been since February 2012.
A large employer in Berkshire County has recently announced they are expanding and planning to bring more jobs to the area, with an agreement to purchase a stationery company based in Southern Maine. WAMC’s Berkshire Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports…
Crane & Co., a manufacturer of stationery, announced Thursday that they had reached a deal with Hallmark Cards, Inc. to acquire subsidiary William Arthur, based in Kennebunk, ME. Crane which operates a manufacturing facility in North Adams, said that with the acquisition they are likely to add 100 jobs to the small city.
Casino operators are promising thousands of jobs will be created when a resort casino project comes to western Massachusetts. Labor leaders are working to guarantee construction jobs go only to union workers. A civil rights leader is seeking assurances that jobs will be plentiful for people of color. WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.