Businesses banking on a summer boom face foreign worker shortage

After absorbing nearly half of the destruction caused by the pandemic shutdowns, the leisure and hospitality industry is still in a deep hole, down 2.5 million jobs from early last year.

“There simply are not enough workers to fill those slots,” said Lynn Minges, president and CEO of the North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association, who estimated the industry has about 70,000 openings in the state.
“And there are a number of factors that contribute to that but obviously one of those is the challenge in getting immigrant workers to fill some of the jobs.”

Restaurants and hotels are reducing opening hours, closing for certain days each week and limiting their guests due to a lack of staff, Minges added, which is also resulting in fatigue and burnout among workers who have to pick up the slack.

Robert Melvin, director of government affairs for the The Virginia Restaurant, Lodging &

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SBA extends deadline on $100M grant program to help businesses recover from COVID

This article first appeared on the Business Journals’ website.

The Small Business Administration is extending the deadline on a $100 million grant program designed to connect small businesses with SBA assistance and programs.

The ‘Community Navigator Pilot’ Program will offer grants of $1 million to $5 million to eligible organizations to provide counseling, networking and to serve as an informal connection to agency resources to help small businesses recover from the economic devastation wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic.

But the original deadline to apply for these grants was July 12 — which has now been extended to July 23. The agency anticipates making awards under the program in September.

“This program is designed to empower a hyperlocal approach through a national network of community navigators who are on the ground truly connecting, empathizing, and tailoring solutions for our small businesses during critical recovery,” said SBA Associate Administrator for the

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These Jobs Have Yet To Be Filled, And It’s Hurting The Economy : NPR

A “Help Wanted” sign is displayed at a gas station in Los Angeles. After surviving the pandemic, small businesses across the country are struggling to find workers

Mario Tama/Getty Images


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A “Help Wanted” sign is displayed at a gas station in Los Angeles. After surviving the pandemic, small businesses across the country are struggling to find workers

Mario Tama/Getty Images

Solstice Wood Fire Pizza in Hood River, Ore., made it through the depths of the pandemic. And now that Americans are eating out and doing all the things that had been off-limits, this should be a booming time for owner Aaron Baumhackl.

Instead, Baumhackl is facing an unexpected problem. He’s struggling to find all the workers he needs to churn out his pizzas, and he’s losing valuable business.

“The demand is like we’ve never seen before,” says Baumhackl. “It would have been a

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Why Carbon Dioxide Capture Could Be A Profitable Business

Carbon dioxide capture, use and storage (CCUS), whether by processing emissions from industrial facilities or extracting it from the air, is garnering a lot of media attention lately: the technology to do so has existed for many years — which doesn’t mean they can’t be improved by using other approaches — but until now, there was little economic incentive.

Rising prices per tonne of captured carbon dioxide make capturing carbon dioxide an increasingly viable business model, with all that this may entail, both positive and negative. It is estimated that up to 90% of the carbon dioxide produced in high concentrations in industrial facilities can be captured using relatively simple methodologies, in addition to smaller percentages when it is captured directly from the atmosphere, where it is much less concentrated. After capture, it must be stored, which requires adequate sites that

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Is Bitcoin mining a viable business in Nigeria?

Bitcoin can be mined, just like we do with natural resources. Mining has a magnetic appeal for many investors interested in cryptocurrency because miners are rewarded for their work with cryptocurrency tokens. In a more technical sense, cryptocurrency mining is a transactional process that involves the use of computers and cryptographic processes to solve complex functions and record data to a blockchain.

When someone sends Bitcoin anywhere, it is called a transaction. Regular transactions made in-store or online are documented by banks, point-of-sale systems and physical receipts but Bitcoin miners achieve the same thing by clumping transactions together in “blocks” and adding them to a public record called the “blockchain.” Nodes then maintain records of those blocks so that they can be verified in the future.

When Bitcoin miners add a new block of transactions to the blockchain, part of their job is to make sure that those transactions are

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BUSINESS ROUNDUP | Business | herald-dispatch.com

Food industry expert to offer assistance to local food producers

CHARLESTON — Sari Kimbell, a consumer packaged food industry expert from Colorado, will lead a Group Accelerator Program for local food producers starting June 30, 2021.

Advantage Valley has partnered with Kimbell to offer technical assistance as part of the FASTER WV program, providing a niche business resource not currently available in West Virginia. Kimbell will offer access to her Food Business Success program, including nine modules with video and tools, checklists and strategies, three one-on-one sessions, three group workshops, and access to group calls for six months.

Advantage Valley’s FASTER WV Program recently offered a webinar on the benefits of co-packing and how to successfully scale up a food or beverage business. The new technical assistance program is geared toward businesses who want to grow sales by scaling up production for sales at farmer’s markets, on grocery store shelves,

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The Week in Business: The Big Compromise

Good morning, and happy first Sunday of summer. Here’s what you need to know in business and tech news for the week ahead.

A bipartisan infrastructure bill is moving forward. The new legislation is a very stripped-down version of the $2 trillion proposal Mr. Biden put forth in March, but he celebrated it as a starting point. It still features some of his cornerstone programs, like funding for broadband expansion, rail projects, public transit, electric vehicles, road and bridge repairs, and water, sewer, power and environmental remediation projects. The total price tag: $579 billion over eight years. To help pay for itself, the bill would bump up enforcement measures by the Internal Revenue Service to reduce tax evasion by corporations and the wealthy.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled unanimously on Monday that the N.C.A.A., which sets the rules

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Pandemic restrictions in US are lifting and business is getting back on the road | US small business

If you’re a business owner and you’re still tentative about getting back on the road to see your customers or attend a conference, you better get over these hesitations quick. Business travel is quickly returning to pre-pandemic levels, and many of my clients are making their travel plans, both professionally and personal. Many others are already traveling.

A few quick statistics to explain what’s going on – and what I’m seeing.

As recently as last week, travelers through the nation’s airports, according to the TSA, have reached 75% of the levels at the same time in 2019 and those levels are rapidly rising. I walked through Chicago’s O’Hare airport last week and the terminals were packed.

Also as of last week, the hotel industry reported that occupancy is currently down a mere 10% compared with the same week in 2019. Last night, at a hotel in Dallas, I

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Marion business owners optimistic as consumers return to normal

For businesses that opened in 2019 right before the pandemic hit, what does normal look like?

That seems to be the biggest question on many Marion business owners’ minds right now as COVID-19 restrictions continue to be reduced. Last year at this time, mask requirements were being posted on store doors. And in some ways, that’s still the case right now, but in a different fashion.

Instead of signs asking customers to wear their face masks, it’s signs telling those who have been vaccinated they can finally remove their face mask. Though the caution tape on the floor for social distancing can still be found and hand sanitizer seems to be never going out of style after the pandemic, lines and wait lists have actually returned to businesses and restaurants.

If someone were to take a quick walk in downtown on the weekend, they’d find families waiting for a table

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How we chose America’s Top States for Business in 2021

How intense is the battle between the states for business and jobs?

Even a global pandemic, a wrenching economic downturn, and a year of social upheaval could not slow it down. If anything, the competition has grown. And it has taken on multiple new dimensions, from the rise of remote work to a new corporate consciousness.

As the recovery gains steam, America’s Top States for Business is back to determine which states are best positioned to prevail.

Our formula for rating the states, which we have used since 2007, is designed to adapt to changing realities — even the seismic changes of the past year.

We start with 10 broad categories of competitiveness. States can earn a maximum of 2,500 points across our 10 categories. The states with the most points are America’s Top States for Business.

We assign a weight to each category based on how hard the states

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