Elkhart County Retains High Jobless Ranking

November 23, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Elkhart County, center of the nation’s RV industry, retained the ranking as having the highest jobless rate in Indiana in October, the state’s department of workforce development reported today (Nov. 23).

The county’s rate was 12.9%.

Meanwhile, the cities of Elkhart and Goshen remained Nos. 1 and 3 with the highest municipal rates. Elkhart’s was 15.1%, up from 14.9% in September, while Goshen’s was 13.8%, up from 13.2% in September.

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Elkhart County Jobless Rate: 13.4% in August

September 21, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

The jobless rate in Elkhart County, Ind., fell to 13.4% in August, from 13.9% in July, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development (IDWD) reported today (Sept. 21).

Elkhart County’s rate remained the second highest in the state.

Meanwhile, the jobless rates for the county’s two largest cities, Elkhart and Goshen, which depend upon jobs in the RV industry, were 15.3% and 13.7%, respectively.

Indiana’s unemployment rate for August has remained flat at 10.2%.

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Elkhart County’s May Jobless Rate Now 13.7%

June 18, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Elkhart County’s jobless rate stood at 13.7% in May, again leading the state, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development (IDWD)reported today (June 18).

The state’s May unemployment held at 10%, unchanged from April. The IDWD said private sector employers throughout the state recorded 6,300 additional jobs in May.

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Elkhart Retains Highest Hoosier Jobless Rate

May 21, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Elkhart County’s jobless rate fell 1.1 percentage points in April, to 14.1%, but it remained the highest rate in Indiana, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development reported today (May 21).

It has fallen nearly 5 percentage points since standing at 18.9% in April 2009.

The cities of Elkhart and Goshen stood at No. 1 and No. 3, respectively, in terms of the highest rates for cities in the state. Their rates were 16.6% and 13.1%, respectively.

The county’s economy is highly dependent upon the RV industry, which produces nearly 70% of the nation’s RVs.

Indiana’s state rate was 10% in April, up from 9.9% in March.

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Elkhart’s Jobless Rate Fell Slightly in March

April 16, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

The jobless rate for Elkhart County, Ind., fell to 15.2% in March, down slightly from 15.5% in February and 15.6% in January, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development reported today (April 16). However, the county, which relies heavily on the RV industry for jobs, retained the highest jobless rate in the state.

Indiana’s preliminary seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate for March 2010 increased by 0.1% to 9.9%, but the number of Hoosier jobs increased by 16,600. That is the largest over-the-month employment increase since September 2005. The monthly increase in the unemployment rate is not considered statistically significant.

“Ten percent of all jobs added in the U.S. (162,000) in March were located in Indiana, but more Hoosiers returned to the work force last month, impacting the rate,” said Teresa Voors, Commissioner of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development.

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Elkhart Jobless Rate Steady 15.5% in February

March 26, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Elkhart County retained the dubious title of having the highest jobless rate in the state of Indiana in February.

The county’s rate stood at 15.5%, about the same as January’s 15.6%, the Department of Workforce Development reported today (March 26).

Rates for the cities of Elkhart and Goshen also topped the charts, at 17.1% and 14.4%, respectively.

Unemployment trends mimic the path of the RV industry which is heavily concentrated in Elkhart County.

The state’s unemployment rate for February inched up 0.1% to 9.8%.

Workforce Development Commissioner Teresa Voors said there’s some positive news from the report.

“Indiana saw a small increase in total employment and a large increase in professional and business services, a sector which includes temporary staffing and often predicts future job growth.” Indiana is also the only state among its neighbors to report an unemployment rate below 10%.

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Elkhart County Jobless Rate Still Tops in Indiana

March 10, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Elkhart County held onto the top spot in terms of joblessness in the state of Indiana in January, the state’s Department of Workforce Development reported today (march 10).

Despite recent hirings in the RV industry, the county’s rate remained high at 15.6%.

Meanwhile, Indiana’s preliminary seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate for January 2010 did not change from the revised December 2009 rate of 9.7% (-0.2 percent). Indiana matched the national rate.

“Similar to the rest of the nation, Indiana isn’t seeing much change right now,” said Teresa Voors, Commissioner of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. “Indiana’s unemployment rate appears to be holding relatively stable based on the slowing of job losses.”

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Elkhart County Tops in 2009 Corporate Measure

March 4, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Site Selection magazine coverElkhart County, Ind., which remains the hub of the RV industry despite the industry downturn, was the top destination for new corporate investment in 2009 among metropolitan areas with populations less than 200,000, according to data tracked in Conway Data Inc.’s New Plant Database.

In the state category, Ohio ranked first for the fourth straight year and Indiana ranked 10th.

Conway Data published the 2009 results to its annual Governor’s Cup awards in Site Selection, a corporate real estate and economic development magazine.

Elkhart County was credited with 17 major investment projects in 2009 to lead the small metro area list. The greater New York City area led all areas with 215 investments. Dayton, Ohio, led the areas of between 200,000 and 1 million population with 46 major investments.

“Elkhart is once again in the national spotlight, but this time as a top location for new business investment last year,” said Mitch Roob, secretary of commerce and CEO of the Indiana Economic Development Corp (IEDC), in a news release. “Indiana’s low-cost business environment is a key differentiator that has attracted many companies to our state in the midst of a competitive economy.”

Governor’s Cup winners are selected based on the number of new corporate location projects in each state and metropolitan area that meet at least one of three criteria:

  • Involve a capital investment of at least $1 million.
  • Create at least 50 new jobs.
  • Add at least 20,000 square feet of new floor area.

“The Governor’s Cup Award is a true honor for Elkhart County. The economic crisis has positioned us on the forefront of national and international news. This award is known to be a leading indicator of future growth and prosperity for a region,” said Dorinda Heiden-Guss, president of the Economic Development Corp. of Elkhart County.

Site Selection, a 56-year-old Atlanta-based magazine, has conducted the Governor’s Cup annually since 1978. The full report can be found at

Created by Gov. Mitch Daniels in 2005 to replace the former Department of Commerce, the IEDC is governed by a 12-member board chaired by Daniels. For more information about IEDC, visit

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Elkhart County Now Deemed a ‘Recovery Zone’

October 14, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

Elkhart County in northern Indiana has been designated as a ”recovery zone” under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

County commissioners Monday approved a resolution that gives Elkhart County access to $75 million in low-interest bonds to jumpstart economic recovery and job creation, according to the Goshen News

As defined by the ARRA, a recovery zone is any area having significant levels of poverty, unemployment, rates of home foreclosures, or overall general distress — all of which currently apply to Elkhart County, the center of RV production in the U.S.

Through the new designation, local governmental units and certain private entities within Elkhart County will now have access to the bonds.

Once issued, such bonds would receive a 45% subsidy of their interest cost from the federal government, which will result in significant interest cost savings for local governments and select private businesses.

In order to validate the new designation, the commissioners recently compiled a factual report outlining the various ways Elkhart County meets the qualifications for a recovery zone.

Findings from the report, which were released Monday, concluded the following:

• The county has experienced significant poverty as demonstrated by unemployment, foreclosures, failed businesses, bankruptcies, vacant properties, demands on area food pantries, and other financial hardships experienced by families.

• The county has experienced significant unemployment as demonstrated by unemployment rates leading the state and receiving local, state and national attention.

• The county has experienced a significant rate of home foreclosures as demonstrated by foreclosure rates meeting or exceeding state and national averages.

• The county has significant general distress as demonstrated by all of the above circumstances.

According to County Attorney Craig Buche, access to the program’s $75 million in low-interest bonding authority will be divided into two categories, or “caps”, with approximately $30 million designated for use by local governmental units under the Recovery Zone Cap, and the remaining $45 million designated for us by county-approved private entities under the Recovery Zone Facility Cap.

While no capital projects have yet been pegged for receipt of the low-interest bonding authority, the commissioners are encouraging all cities, towns and private businesses within Elkhart County who have economic development capital projects in the works to apply through the commissioner’s office.


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Elkhart Jobless Rate Again Tops in Hoosier State

August 21, 2009 by · Leave a Comment 

The RV manufacturing hub of Elkhart County regained the ominous recognition of having the highest unemployment rate in Indiana in July.

The county’s jobless rate last month was 16.7%, according to the Associated Press.

Howard County, which had the highest rate in the state for several months, fell to 10th with a  rate of 14.7%.

The Indiana Department of Workforce Development said the state unemployment rate for July was 10.6%, essentially unchanged from 10.7% in June. Commissioner Teresa Voors said the report shows the impact of the auto industry emerging from bankruptcy and workers returning from summer furloughs. She adds large increases in manufacturing employment and gains in cities like Kokomo in Howard County are a “direct result of Hoosier auto workers going back to work.”


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