While parts of the United States struggle with high unemployment rates – close to 10 percent in Michigan and Illinois – South Dakota enjoys the second lowest unemployment rate in the nation, 3.8 percent.
Advantage South Dakota recently hosted a two-day Jobs Showcase Tour, highlighting the some 3,000 job openings in South Dakota’s James River Valley. Employment Edge participated in the tour, visiting Aberdeen, Webster, Milbank, Redfield, Huron, DeSmet, Madison, Mitchell, Freeman and Yankton.
Here is a brief overview of what we learned:
1. The business climate in these communities is progressive. Nearly every industry sector is enjoying growth. All of the communities we visited are dedicated to attracting new business and helping existing businesses. In addition, the businesses that we visited offer attractive wages, benefits, and opportunities for promotion.
2. The James River Valley boasts a stable economy. Rather than relying on one specific type of employer, the region includes a diverse group of businesses and industries. That balanced mix makes the James River Valley an ideal place for economic growth and stability.
3. Cost of living is very affordable. South Dakota has no personal income tax, meaning more take-home pay. In addition, the cost of living index is below the national average in every one of the communities we visited – an average 20% lwer.
4. The communities offer exceptional quality of life. As we toured the region we found communities enhanced by excellent public and private schools, health care facilities, outdoor sports, rivers and lakes, hunting and fishing, arts, music, theater, parks, and museums. Best of all, we found an abundance of community pride and optimism.
Employment Edge congratulates these communities for the role they play in the economic development of eastern South Dakota.
(October 8, 2013)