Klamath Falls, Ore. – Just in time for Governor Kate Brown’s visit here this week, the numbers are out and unemployment rates continues to improve in our County. Commissioner Chair Kelley Minty Morris says a big “THANK YOU to our job creators!”
According to the The Oregon Employment Department, employment was much improved in both Klamath and Lake Counties last year. We saw sustained job gains, which helped to lower levels of unemployment. Our region continues to recover from the recession but in 2016, we had the largest job gains in the current recovery. Also, there were nearly 100 fewer job losses than typically expected this time of year. For Klamath, the unemployment rate dropped for the second consecutive month. A year ago we were at 7.9% unemployment – in Nov 6.8% and Dec was 6.3%.
Also while she was here Tuesday, she sat down to speak with two Oregon Tech officials, OIT’s Interim President, Dr. Kenton and Hallie Neupert, the Interim Dean of Tech’s College of Engineering, Technology and Management. OIT has been expanding efforts to encourage economic growth within our County over the last few years. One of the largest of those projects is the Catalyze Klamath Falls Challenge. It’s an annual event that aims to support business ideas in the Basin. The contest encourages students or recent alumni to produce a new idea, product or service that could become a thriving business in Klamath Falls. The winner gets $17,000 to help get their ideas off the ground.