NEWS 10.20.22: School Bus Crash, More Early Voting, Nebraska Governor Candidates on Abortion, Iowa Unemployment and More
A school bus accident outside of Marcus this morning sent three children and the bus driver to a local hospital. Only minor injuries were reported. The Iowa State Patrol says a semi failed to stop at a stop sign and collided with the bus. The students attend the Marcus -Meriden-Cleghorn-Remsen Union School District. The district’s superintendent posted on Facebook, "We are extremely grateful that our driver and students have been spared serious injuries during the collision. We have our school counselors available to meet with students as a result of this incident. We pray for healing for the injuries that were sustained, and ask for your continued prayers for the safety of our students and staff at MMCRU."
Six internal walls for the new Woodbury County Law Enforcement Center fell due to wind on Friday. The Sioux City Journal reports the installation of walls has been delayed for an unknown amount of time.
U.S. Democratic Senate candidate Mike Franken headed to the Sioux City polls to vote today. Early voting began just yesterday (Wednesday) in the state and will continue until Election Day.
After casting his ballot, Franken encouraged Iowans to do the same. He says it’s an opportunity to make their voices heard in the midterm elections.
“I urge everyone to think about what's best in their own interests, and also what's best for the children, and the next generation, and vote as if your life depended on it.”
Franken is challenging longtime Senator Chuck Grassley for his seat in the Senate. A Des Moines Register poll recently showed it’s a tight race, with Grassley ahead of Franken by three points – within the survey’s margin of error.
With the Nebraska Legislature coming two votes shy of creating stricter abortion rules this summer, many voters in the state are casting ballots based on this one issue. SPM's Sheila Brummer has more.
Gov. Pete Ricketts attempted to bring back lawmakers for a special session to reduce the abortion timeframe to 15 weeks but fell two votes short.
* Special thanks to WOWT in Omaha, Nebraska for providing audio of the Nebraska candidates for governor.
As some of her fellow Republicans call for deep cuts or an end to U-S aid for Ukraine, Iowa Senator Joni Ernst suggests that would be a dangerous step.
The Republican poised to be House Speaker if the GOP gains control of Congress next year says the GOP will no longer give the Biden Administration “a blank check” for the war in Ukraine and will insist on a plan for ending the conflict. While Ernst agrees unlimited spending on the war effort is unwise, she says the U.S. needs to keep supporting Ukraine. She adds Americans deserve to know how the dollars are being spent.
In 2014, Ernst became the first female combat veteran elected to the U.S. Senate. In late 2015, she retired from the Iowa National Guard as a lieutenant colonel. She is now part of Senate GOP leadership as the vice chairman of the Senate Republican Conference.
Iowa’s unemployment rate of 2.7% for September is slightly higher than the previous month, a tenth of a percent increase.
Several sectors of the Iowa economy recorded job losses last month, while Iowa manufacturers added 600 jobs. There were 600 job losses, primarily in the insurance industry, according to Radio Iowa.
Over 1.66 million Iowans were working last month, a labor participation rate of almost 68%. The Head of Iowa Workforce Development says there are currently more than 83,000 jobs available in the state today.
News release from the State of Iowa:
Iowa’s Unemployment Rate Increases Slightly, Labor Force Participation Holds Steady in September
DES MOINES, IOWA – Iowa’s unemployment rate increased slightly to 2.7 percent in September, while overall labor force participation held steady at 67.7 percent. The U.S. unemployment rate fell to 3.5 percent in September, but the nation’s labor force participation rate fell to 62.3 percent. Iowa’s unemployment rate increased by a tenth-of-a-percent last month but is down from 4.1 percent one year ago. The number of unemployed Iowans increased to 46,500 in September from 44,700 in August but remains down 32 percent from 68,800 one year ago. The total number of working Iowans decreased to 1,662,900 in September. This figure is 1,900 lower than August but 53,600 higher than the number from one year ago. “September’s survey illustrates several areas that will require close observation in the months ahead as Iowa’s employers continue to battle record inflation and uncertainty in our economic environment,” said Beth Townsend, Director of Iowa Workforce Development. “Industries like manufacturing remain healthy, and Iowans still want to work, but the tightening national economy makes it more important than ever that we maintain our urgency about reemployment. In uncertain economic times, the best place to be is employed, and our Reemployment Case Management program helps Iowans who may be negatively impacted by the slowing economy minimize their time between jobs. With more than 82,000 jobs available on IowaWORKS.gov, now is the time to make those connections and help Iowans find their next great job as soon as possible.”
Seasonally Adjusted Nonfarm Employment
Iowa establishments shed 2,400 jobs in September, lowering total nonfarm employment down to 1,577,400 jobs. This loss, the first in six months, is the result of service industries scaling back in September. Prior to this loss, Iowa had added more than 17,400 jobs over the past five months. Private industries combined for almost the entire loss (-2,200), although government shed a slight 200 jobs due mostly to a drop in state government. Since last September, government remains up 3,600 jobs while the state has advanced by 37,500 jobs. Health care and social assistance shed 1,000 jobs to lead all sectors in September. This sector has previously added jobs over the past two months. Despite this month’s loss, this sector has shown signs of expansion again and is 1,700 jobs above this time last year. Elsewhere, transportation and utilities shed 800 jobs and fueled a loss of 1,000 jobs in trade, transportation, and utilities. This is now the second consecutive loss for transportation and warehousing. Within this super sector, wholesale trade also pared 400 jobs. This was this sector’s first loss since April. Financial activities also trended down in September (-600). Job losses in this sector were highest in insurance carriers and related activities. Alternatively, job gains were led by manufacturing in September (+600). Nondurable goods factories were responsible for all the job gains this month with hiring being strongest in animal slaughtering and processing. Over the past twelve months, leisure and hospitality has added the most jobs of any sector (+11,400). Accommodations and food services has been responsible for most of the jobs gained (+8,900). Manufacturing continues to hire and is up 8,800 jobs compared to last September. Nondurable goods factories are expanding faster than durable goods shops and have added 6,800 jobs alone. Retail trade has gained 4,300 jobs and fueled a gain of 6,200 jobs in trade, transportation, and utilities industries.
Employment and Unemployment in Iowa, Seasonally Adjusted Data
Civilian labor force
Labor Force Participation Rate
U.S. unemployment rate
Nonfarm Employment in Iowa, Seasonally Adjusted Data
Total Nonfarm Employment
Trade, transportation and utilities
Professional and business services
Education and health services
Leisure and hospitality
(above data subject to revision)
Unemployment Insurance Claims for Iowa
% Change from
Visit www.iowalmi.gov for more information about current and historical data, labor force data, nonfarm employment, hours and earnings, and jobless benefits by county. MEDIA ALERT: Local data for September 2022 will be posted to the IWD website on Tuesday, October 25, 2022. Statewide data for October 2022 will be released on Thursday, November 17, 2022 at 9 a.m.