Monday, February 11, 2013

Some employment seekers strike gold at Moab job fair

Many swarmed the Moab Arts and Recreation Center on Wednesday seeking employment from about two dozen companies and agencies that had set up booths. The annual event ran from 8 a.m. until noon.

There were jobs to be had, too. Some applicants struck gold during the job fair’s first two hours.

“Everyone is hiring within the next month or so,” said organizer Kelly Thornton, workforce development specialist with the Utah Department of Workforce Services. “Our employers have reported good applicants and some jobs have already been offered.”

Blu Pig owner Penny Tanner planned to hire 30 people for part-time or full-time work. The jobs included cooks, servers, food runners, dishwashers, food prep specialists, bartenders, hostesses and table bussers.

With tourist season kicking off the first of March, Tanner said there’s no time to waste. She listed the available positions on a blackboard next to her booth.

The Grand County job market has improved in the last couple of years, according to information from the Utah Department of Workforce Services. The agency’s website shows the county’s unemployment rate was 8.7 percent in 2012, down from 9.8 percent in 2011, 10.7 percent in 2010 and 10.3 percent in 2009.

Moab City Economic Development Specialist Ken Davey said economic growth has been steady but nothing major.

Davey noted that some hotel firms plan expansions in Moab and he called that an encouraging sign. Moab Times