WALKER -- A recently released Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development report on the labor market here shows more people living north of Cass County work in the county than visa versa, while more Cass residents work in Crow Wing County than the reverse.
The report shows 880 Beltrami residents and 872 Hubbard residents work in Cass County, but only 199 Cass residents work in Beltrami and 125 Cass residents work in Hubbard County.
There are 2,930 Cass residents employed in Crow Wing County, while 640 Crow Wing residents travel into Cass for work.
There is about even migration between Cass and Itasca counties, with 250 Itasca residents working in Cass and 200 Cass residents working in Itasca. Nine people live in Hennepin County and work in Cass, and 196 Cass County residents travel to Hennepin County for their work.
Manufacturing industries in Cass and Crow Wing counties have been shedding jobs, losing 810 jobs or 21.3 percent of these counties' combined manufacturing employment from 2000 to 2003, the study reports.
In general, the majority of new hires come from job switches, the report found.
Unemployment rates in area counties have fluctuated since 2000, but consistently remained higher than the Minnesota average.
Cass' unemployment rate in 2000 ran 6.6 percent; in 2001, 6.3 percent; in 2002, 6.3 percent; and in 2003, 7.8 percent. The unemployment rate this year was as high as 11.2 percent in January, dropping to 5.6 percent in May and rising again in June to 6.6 percent
Crow Wing's unemployment rate in 2000 and 2001 ran 4.5 percent; in 2002, 5.2 percent; and in 2003, 6 percent. So far this year, the high was 7.9 percent in January, dropping to 4.1 percent in May and rising again in June to 4.9 percent.
The highest number of workers in Cass and Crow Wing, 13,910, make between $5.16 and $9.99 per hour. The next highest number, 9,483, make between $10 and $14.99 per hour, followed by the 5,186 people who make between $15 and $19.99 per hour.
Crow Wing had a significantly higher percentage than Cass of people making wages above that. There were more in both counties making between $20 and $24.99 and over $30,000 than there were being paid $25 to $29.99 per hour.
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