Unemployment rate low as seasonal hiring approaches

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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KJCT)-- The holidays are fast approaching, and with them come some seasonal jobs. Work has been steady in Mesa County, and the Mesa County Workforce Center’s latest numbers on unemployment prove it.

"We call this the calm before the storm," said Shane Allerheiligen, a co-owner of a Robin’s Nest of Antiques & Treasures.

Many call it the most wonderful time of year.

“We get much heavier crowds, probably twice as much business during the holidays,” said Allerheiligen.

But, it’s also one of the busiest, especially for shoppers.

"We’re always working overtime; we work like seven days a week pretty much through the end of the year,” said Allerheiligen.

The holidays also bring some seasonal work.

"The typical retail that you would expect, as well as hospitality and food industry,” said Celina Kirnberger, with the Mesa County Workforce Center.

So far, this year’s unemployment rates have made big strides.

"We started out in the 5%, over the 5% unemployment rate at the beginning of the year," said Kirnberger.

Most recent numbers, from September, are some of the best in nearly a decade.

"We're currently at 3% and we’ve held steady at that for the last couple of months," said Kirnberger.

Businesses have begun staying open longer.

"We’ll have extended hours, we don't close at a certain time,” said Allerheiligen. “That's one of our niches we stay here till people are done, we’ve been here till 9, 10 at night."

Business is already booming for some.

"We have 90 vendors in the store currently, and that's the most we've ever had,” said Allerheiligen.

Unemployment numbers typically stay around the same this time of year.

"Or slightly increase throughout the remainder of the winter, and then it typically will lower again in the spring," said Kirnberger.

The Mesa County Workforce Center said the only jobs that the only downfall to this time of year is for outdoor related jobs, like construction and landscaping. Those typically see layoffs this time of year.

October unemployment numbers will come out later this week.

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