January 22. 2013 4:00PM
S.D. hiring outlook below national average
The hiring outlook for South Dakota in the first quarter of 2013 tracks below the national average, according to the Manpower Employment Outlook Survey.
It found 14 percent of companies in the state plan to add employees between January and March. An additional 79 percent expect to maintain their staffing levels, and 1 percent aren’t sure of their hiring plans.
The data result in a net employment outlook of 8 percent, compared with the national average of 11 percent. It’s also weaker than the same time one year ago, when South Dakota had a net outlook of 10 percent.
For the coming quarter, job prospects appear best in durable and nondurable goods manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade, information, financial activities, professional and business services, leisure and hospitality, and government. Employers in education and health services plan to reduce staffing levels, while hiring in construction, transportation and utilities, and other services is expected to remain unchanged.
Wild Game Feed to benefit cancer patients
The Ed Polzine Memorial Youth Cancer Fund Wild Game Feed will be held Saturday, Feb. 2, at the Brandon VFW, 321 Main Ave., Brandon. A dinner buffet is served at 5 p.m. For a freewill donation, and a live auction starts at 7 p.m. The evening also includes silent auctions, raffles and door prizes.
The fund supports families and children in the Brandon area who have cancer.
To donate toward the prizes, call 595-7772 or 610-6563. Donations of food to be prepared must be delivered to the VFW by Friday, Jan. 25.
Sioux Falls area jobless rate unchanged in November, December
South Dakota’s unemployment rate was 4.4 percent in December, the same as in November, according to the South Dakota Department of Labor and Regulation.
There were 19,500 people who were considered unemployed in December.
The statewide unemployment rate in December 2011 was 4.3 percent.
The unemployment rate for the Sioux Falls area was 3.7 percent in November, unchanged from October and from a year ago.
In November, there were 4,920 people who were looking for work, compared with 4,810 in October. The labor force was smaller last month so the unemployment rate remained unchanged.
South Dakotans warned of scammers claiming to represent government
Attorney General Marty Jackley is warning South Dakota businesses and consumers to guard themselves against fraudulent telemarketers claiming to be representatives of state or federal government agencies. They trick victims into giving up personal identifying information.
“Consumers and businesses alike tend to take phone calls or emails from government officials very seriously and these unscrupulous attempts to obtain personal or sensitive information is just another example of what lengths these scams artists will go to make a buck,” Jackley said.
Everyone is advised to take the time to verify the accuracy of any phone call, email or letter that claims to be from a local, state or federal government agency. Find the agency’s website or phone number on a separate search, and do not use the phone numbers, email addresses or links provided from unsolicited contacts.
Contact the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division at 1-800-300-1986 or at email@example.com for more information.
Post Prom parents seeking donations
The Dell Rapids High School After Prom Committee, comprised of junior and senior parents, are seeking funds for this year’s event.
The prom is April 6, and after prom will be a lock-in event at the high school. There will be a comedian hypnotist, carnival games and inflatable obstacle courses.
The committee is encouraging area businesses and residents to contribute gift items or monetary donations. Donors should contact Joanne Mathis at 605-951-2332 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Former Tribune editor run Kansas school
Wichita State University has hired a media historian to lead the Elliott School of Communication.
The university announced Friday that Matthew Cecil will begin work as the school's director on June 30. Cecil is currently an associate professor at South Dakota State University's department of journalism and mass communication.
Cecil once was the editor of the Dell Rapids Tribune.
Cecil will succeed Lou Heldman, who has served as the school's interim director since 2011. The new director will oversee 30 faculty and staff members and courses for more than 2,000 students at the university's communications school.
The university said Cecil is the author of a forthcoming book, "J. Edgar Hoover and the American Press: Journalism, Public Relations and the Legitimation of the FBI." He is also working on a new book about the work of journalist George Seldes.
Health Department urges vaccination as flu activity increases to widespread
People who’ve delayed getting vaccinated for flu may want to proceed now that flu virus activity is widespread in South Dakota, says a state health official.
“We do encourage people to get vaccinated early in the season but it’s still not too late to get immunized,” said Dr. Lon Kightlinger, State Epidemiologist for the Department of Health. “The flu virus is likely to be with us for several weeks, if not months, so getting vaccinated now can provide important protection from the flu.”
Kightlinger noted that this year’s flu activity is occurring earlier and at higher levels than recent years, other than the 2009 pandemic. To date, South Dakota has reported 469 laboratory-confirmed cases of flu and 135 flu-related hospitalizations. There have also been nine deaths reported, all over the age of 75.
Health department officials recommend annual flu vaccination for everyone, but some are at higher risk for complications – pregnant women, people over 50 years and people with chronic medical conditions. Health-care workers and household contacts of high-risk populations such as those with young infants should also be vaccinated. Children are another high-risk group, accounting for significant cases and hospitalizations each year and helping spread flu in the community. The department offers free flu vaccine for kids from six months to 18 years.