Existing industry spending big news
If there is one thing that makes a long term impact on Polk County in the years to come from the year that was, it will be this: existing industries are investing in the community, and now hiring signs are back up all over the place.
No matter what side of the county one lives on, the announcement of investments by some of the largest local employers made a difference. One way to tell: a drop in unemployment.
Back in November, the state released initial figures for the month of October, and Polk County came in at the time — before any holiday additional hiring at stores — with a 4.8 percent unemployment rate. Compared to the year before at 6 percent before the election of 2016, the rate has dropped 1.2 points in a year. That also includes a change in the number of people available in the civilian workforce in the county, which went up from 18,226 in 2016 to 18,382 as of the start of the second fiscal quarter of the year.