Normally a higher wage state with many quality union jobs, Oregon's March unemployment rate has soared to a dismal 12.1%, likely the worst in the nation even beyond the 12.0% unemployment rate of Michigan as the Detroit automobile industry collapses in the wake of this serious global recession.
While the federal stimulus efforts are targeted at boosting the economy quickly by even boosting such things as Food Stamps payments, immediately boosting sales at grocery stores, often in poor neighborhoods, creating more employment, Oregon's own version of economic stimulus has been slow to create new jobs. Oregon's own version of economic stimulus passed by the state legislature and signed by the governor was intended to help the 24% unemployment rate among construction workers by providing $175 million in projects funding. However, because the process to start these projects is so slow, so far just 16 jobs have been created by this $175 million in project funding. It may take months to years for many unemployment construction workers to see work from the state version of the economic stimulus which just was not as well focused as the federal version by any means.
Even Oregon business is seeing serious financial problems a result of this continuing recession. Joes, a major automotive parts and sporting goods dealer, which started out as war surplus store, which has 30 stores in 3 states, including some huge Oregon stores is going into liquidation and closing within a month.
A major downtown Portland, Oregon construction project is being stopped for months to a year, because the developer simply ran out of money after digging a huge excavation site hole. In other cases, uncompleted urban development shopping projects are offering rent allowances of $25,000 or more for any prospective retail renters who will bring in money to provide basic items such as interior walls, ceilings, lights, toilets, sinks, etc. Developers started projects, and then ran out of money, leaving uncompleted and largely unrentable retail sites that are not even as well completed as the average home garage. These uncompleted construction eyesores are a sign of the times as developers start projects and then run out of money to complete the projects.
At all levels, Oregon is seeing serious signs of this recession causing serious problems in construction work at all levels including huge unemployment and now uncompleted construction projects.
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