Business News: GF sales tax…jobs and free fishing

An inflation gauge closely watched by the Federal Reserve rose 6.3% in April from a year earlier, just below a four-decade high set in March and the first slowdown since November 2020. The report adds to other recent signs that if high inflation continues to cause hardship for millions of households, it may finally be easing, at least for now. The report also showed that consumer spending rose 0.9% from March to April.

Average long-term mortgage rates in the United States fell this week for the second week in a row, although interest rates on the key 30-year home loan remain at high levels for a decade. Economic uncertainty and weaker buyer demand continue to weigh on mortgage rates. Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac said the 30-year rate fell to 5.1% from 5.25% last week.

Minnesota gained 11,900 jobs, up 0.4% from March to April on a seasonally adjusted basis after adding 13,200 jobs the previous month. The private sector gained 10,600 jobs, up 0.4%. This continues a winning streak for the seventh month. The activity rate went from 68.1% to 68.3%.

Preliminary estimates indicate that North Dakota’s unadjusted nonfarm employment in April 2022 was 10,600 jobs (+2.6%) higher than the same month a year ago. The Grand Forks metropolitan area had 1,100 positions. Leisure and hospitality posted the largest gains in Grand Forks, followed by the professional and business services sector.

After dropping below the $2 million mark for consecutive months, Grand Forks sales tax collections topped $2.17 million in the May payment. That brings the year-to-date count to $11,649,623.43. That’s up 3.54% from a year ago.

Hampton Corporation has obtained planning permission from the City of Grand Forks for a 24-unit building with garages at 2251 Fleetwood Drive. The permit is for a $4.125 million project.

The Minnesota Board of Animal Health is extending the statewide ban on poultry events through Friday, July 1, 2022. Animal health officials first enacted the ban in April and have already extended once to reduce the potential risk of spreading HPAI. The ban includes all poultry exchanges, fairs, exhibitions and other events where live poultry and susceptible birds are gathered and then dispersed.

Minnesota employers will benefit from $3.347 million in dual education grants from the Minnesota Office of Higher Education to fund related education for dual education programs. Of the funds awarded, $1.9 million was awarded to employers located in greater Minnesota. The funding will help 56 employers located across Minnesota provide training and career paths to a total of 644 current and new employees.

The North Dakota Industrial Commission has approved a $15 million loan to Midwest AgEnergy Group and Carbon America Developments LLC for a carbon dioxide capture and sequestration project in McLean County. The project would capture CO2 from the Blue Flint ethanol plant. The goal is to reduce emissions from the ethanol plant by around 200,000 tonnes per year.

Ford Motor Company has settled claims by 40 U.S. state attorneys general that the company made misleading claims about the fuel economy and payload capacity of some of its vehicles. The company agreed on Tuesday to pay $19.2 million to the states and to refrain from making misleading advertising claims. Ford said in a statement that he is pleased the investigation has been resolved without a court finding of improper conduct.

The North Dakota Department of Human Services and the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences Rural Health Center today announced the launch of the North Dakota Qualified Service Provider Hub – a virtual resource and training center developed to support the state’s live caregivers. The hub will support those registered as qualified service providers with the department. These direct care workers provide home and community services to seniors and people with disabilities, including traumatic brain injury and dementia.

Altru has received Joint Commission regional laboratory accreditation. “What this Joint Commission accreditation means for our patients is that they can be confident that our regional labs in Crookston, Devils Lake, Thief River Falls, Truyu (MOHS) and Professional Center meet quality standards. the highest for healthcare labs,” says Terri Hintz, Head of Laboratory Services at Altru.

The University of Minnesota Crookston has announced that Tu Lynn Sommerfeld has returned as Director of the Early Childhood Development Center (ECDC). Sommerfeld previously served as principal for 11 years, before leaving last fall to take up a position at Sacred Heart School in East Grand Forks, Minnesota. She will begin her second term as Director of ECDC on June 1, 2022.

North Dakota residents who want to try fishing are reminded that they can fish for free on June 4 and 5. It’s the state’s Free Fishing Weekend, where all residents 16 and older can fish in any water in North Dakota without a license. Residents 15 and under do not need a fishing license at any time of the year.

Many hotels across the United States have eliminated daily maid service, making what was already one of the toughest jobs in the hospitality industry even more exhausting. Industry insiders say the move away from daily cleaning, which has gained traction during the pandemic, is driven by customer preferences. But others say it has more to do with profit and has allowed hotels to reduce their number of housekeepers.

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