Economy

Payday Loans
12:08 pm
Tue December 17, 2013

Caldwell, Idaho Limits Payday Loan Shops

Officials in a southwestern Idaho city have passed new rules limiting where payday loan businesses can open shop.

The Idaho Press-Tribune reports the Caldwell City Council unanimously passed an ordinance this week limiting new payday loan businesses to manufacturing and light industrial zones. The rules mean that if a payday loan company wants to open a storefront in a populated area, it will have to get a special use permit first.

Fraud
5:58 pm
Mon December 16, 2013

Holiday Shoppers May Hit Snags As Banks Try To Curb Fraud

File photo.
Michael Kappel Flickr

An unprecedented rash of credit card fraud in one corner of the Northwest is forcing banks to put limits on card purchases – just in time for the busiest shopping season of the year.

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Lawsuit
10:20 am
Fri December 13, 2013

4 Miners Injured At Lucky Friday Mine Sue Hecla

Credit Photo by Hecla Mining

Four miners who were injured and trapped by a rock burst at a northern Idaho mine two years ago are suing Hecla Mining Co., alleging mine mangers sent them into unsafe working conditions while assuring them the area was safe.

The Spokesman-Review reports Ronnel E. Barrett, Gregg Hammerberg, Eric J. Tester and Matthew Williams are seeking more than $1 million for injuries, medical treatment and lost wages.

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Agriculture
6:38 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Washington State Sees Big Jump In Use of Temporary Foreign Farmhands

File photo.
Anna King Northwest News Network

Northwest farmers hired significantly more foreign guest workers this season under a special immigration program.

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Transportation
12:43 pm
Wed December 11, 2013

Megaload Back On The Road As Blaine County Expresses Concern Over Shipment

A megaload is expected to cross into Southern Idaho from Oregon.
Credit Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network

A shipment of nearly a million pounds of oil field equipment resumed its drive Tuesday night toward Canada. The load had been stopped for the past week by bad weather in eastern Oregon.

A spokeswoman for the company in charge of the shipment, Omega Morgan, says the "megaload" started moving again around 10 p.m.  Holly Zander says crews pulled the equipment about 50 miles along Highway 395 before stopping around 4 a.m.

Omega Morgan is expected to be issued the necessary permits to move the load through southern Idaho.

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Economy
9:44 am
Tue December 10, 2013

Greek Yogurt Maker Chobani To Expand Twin Falls Production

Credit TBiley / Flickr Creative Commons

Greek yogurt company Chobani says it is increasing production at its Twin Falls plant and adding production of a new "light" yogurt called Simply 100.

Chobani officials tell The Times-News the $450 million plant is running at optimal production capability for the first time since it opened a year ago. When the plant opened, it made about 100,000 cases of yogurt per week running three or four production lines. It is now running 12 production lines and producing up to a million cases of yogurt a week.

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Agriculture
6:27 pm
Thu December 5, 2013

Northwest Wine Grape Growers Brace For Cold Damage

Snow partially covers the groud at Pepper Bridge vineyard nearr Walla Walla, Wash.
Anna King Northwest News Network

Originally published on Fri December 6, 2013 3:50 pm

Northwest wine grape growers expect this week's cold weather to do some damage to their vineyards. But it’s not clear yet how much of next year’s fruit might be affected.

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Economy
7:45 am
Tue December 3, 2013

Idaho Void Of "Super Zips," State's Most Elite Zip Codes Are Near Boise

Three of Idaho's four most elite Zip codes, shaded in green, are in the Boise-metro area.
Credit Washington Post

A Washington Post analysis of elite Zip codes in the United States shows Idaho doesn’t have a so-called Super Zip. These are high-end neighborhoods where the median annual household income is $120,000 and 7 in 10 adults have a college degree.

The Post analyzed U.S. Census Bureau data and plotted their findings on this interactive map. There are 650 Super Zips in the country, with the largest concentration of wealth and education in Washington, D.C.

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Ag Lawsuit
6:00 am
Mon December 2, 2013

Why A Group Of Idaho Potato Growers Is In Court Over Alleged Price-Fixing, "Cartel Behavior"

Credit thebittenword.com / Flickr Creative Commons

A set of lawsuits winding its way through federal court in Idaho combine a couple phrases you might not expect to find together: "massive international cartel" and "potato."

According to a group of grocers, the innocuous looking potato on your plate got there through a conspiracy involving price-fixing, coercion and aerial surveillance. But potato growers counter there is no cartel. Just a co-op.

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Black Friday
4:30 pm
Fri November 29, 2013

Northwesterners Join In National Walmart Protest

Protesters in front of the Albany, Oregon Walmart.
Chris Lehman Northwest News Network

As the Christmas shopping season gets into full-swing, Black Friday was a day of protest for some in the Northwest.

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Agriculture
4:09 pm
Wed November 27, 2013

Northwest Cranberry Growers Wish You’d Eat Their Product Year-Round

Northwest cranberry growers are trying to get more of their product into the supermarket produce section. These berries are for sale at a Salem, Oregon grocery store.
Chris Lehman Northwest News Network

Originally published on Wed November 27, 2013 4:16 pm

One out of every five cranberries grown in the U.S. is eaten Thanksgiving week, according to industry giant Ocean Spray.

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Agriculture
4:08 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

Small Northwest Winemakers May Have More Juice To Work With This Year

Northwest winemakers expect an abundance of high-quality juice this year.
Trey Busch Sleight of Hand Cellars

Originally published on Wed November 27, 2013 9:23 am

Early crop reports from farmers say Washington and Oregon’s wine grape harvest appears to be up a tick for 2013.

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Transportation
9:10 am
Tue November 26, 2013

Map: Proposed Megaload Route Will Wind Across Southern Idaho's Backroads

This is a similar over-sized shipment that traveled through Idaho earlier in 2013.
Credit Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network

Giant pieces of equipment headed for Canada's oil sands are expected to travel through southern Idaho once the oversized gear makes its way across Oregon.

Omega Morgan, a trucking company hired, was forced to choose a new route for moving its so-called 'megaloads' through Idaho after a judge blocked plans to ship the loads over U.S. Highway 12.

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Economy
8:57 am
Tue November 26, 2013

Idaho Jobless Claims Drop To Lowest Level Since 2006

An employer talks with a job seeker at an Idaho job fair.
Credit Molly Messick / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho's unemployment insurance claims dropped to their lowest level since 2006, a year of strong economic growth that preceded the deep recession that began in December 2007.

The Department of Labor said Monday it paid 7,462 regular benefit claims during the third week of November, 14 fewer than that week in 2006.

The amount paid was still 23 percent higher than 2006, however, because the average benefit is $25 higher this year at $255, reflecting benefit increases over the past seven years.

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Transportation
8:37 pm
Mon November 25, 2013

Controversy Follows 'Megaloads' Through Oregon-Idaho Route

File photo of a megaload parked along Idaho’s Highway 12. A federal judge blocked the route to further megaload traffic until the Forest Service reviews the impact to a wild and scenic corridor.
Jessica Robinson Northwest News Network

Originally published on Mon November 25, 2013 5:13 pm

The first of three hulking pieces of oil equipment, known as “megaloads,” is expected to start its slow, winding journey through eastern Oregon Monday.

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Taxes
3:03 pm
Mon November 25, 2013

Tax Commission Reminds Holiday Shoppers To Pay Their Idaho Sales Tax

Credit 401(K)2013 / Flickr Creative Commons

With Cyber Monday less than a week away, holiday shoppers are busy buying gifts online. But many shoppers don’t realize if they purchase items on the Internet, they still owe the state some money.

It’s called the use tax and it’s been around since 1965. It applies to anything you buy over the phone, mail-order, or the Internet. It’s the same rate as the regular sales tax, 6 percent.

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Idaho News
10:05 am
Mon November 25, 2013

Boise Rescue Mission To Open Canyon County Shelter

The Boise Rescue Mission has finalized a deal to buy a facility in Nampa to house 60 women and children.

KTVB-TV reports the deal completed Friday will fill a need throughout Canyon County and will be the only shelter of its kind in Nampa.

The new facility will be called the Valley Women and Children's Shelter.

The building used to house the Valley Crisis Center, but that closed several months ago.

Unemployment
12:07 pm
Fri November 22, 2013

Idaho’s Unemployment Rate Falls Slightly In October

Job seekers speak with potential employers at a Meridian, Idaho job fair.
Credit Emilie Ritter Saunders / Boise State Public Radio

Idaho's jobless rate held steady in September, and dropped slightly in October. The Idaho Labor Department reports the unemployment rate was unchanged from August to September at 6.8 percent. It fell in October to 6.7 percent.

Normally, jobless rates come out once a month. Friday’s two-for-one report was released because of the partial government shutdown over the first two weeks of October.

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Transportation
12:27 pm
Thu November 21, 2013

Shipping Company Proposes New Megaload Route Through Southern Idaho

This megaload shipment crossed from Idaho into Montana in 2009.
Credit Nicholas.Senn / Flickr Creative Commons

A company hired by a subsidiary of General Electric to ship massive oil refinery equipment to the tar sands project in Canada is now seeking to haul the oversized loads across eastern Oregon and southern Idaho.

The first of three megaloads could begin making its way through Oregon this weekend before crossing into Idaho's southwestern corner next week.

The Oregon Department of Transportation has already issued permits for the first shipment, while Idaho highway officials are still studying the travel plan submitted by shipper Omega Morgan.

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Income
12:22 pm
Thu November 21, 2013

Data: Personal Income Growth Slows In Idaho

Credit Bureau of Economic Analysis

Personal income growth slowed between 2011 and 2012 across Idaho's metro areas. That’s according to data released Thursday by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA).

On average, incomes grew by 4.2 percent across the nation’s metro areas. None of Idaho’s metro areas met or exceeded that average.

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