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Kauai unemployment rate remains low

LIHUE — People on Kauai are working and the people of WorkWise Kauai are happy.

Hawaii’s seasonably adjusted unemployment rate fell to 3.5 percent for the month of August, a decrease from the 3.7 percent recorded in July, the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations said Thursday.

The Kauai figure, in contrast to the state total, is an increase from the 3.7 percent in July.

“This is unbelievable,” said Kaeo Bradford, the WorkWise specialist with the county’s Office of Economic Development. “I just got the numbers and was working with the Kauai figures which show we’re at 3.8 percent, compared with the state’s 3.5 percent figure.”

The Safeway stores, which opened Friday, helped put people back to work by adding 146 new jobs on Kauai. Jack in the Box, which opened in August, added about 150 jobs.

Eric Nordmeier, director of the WorkWise program on Kauai, said despite the good unemployment figures, people are still looking for work.

“There are people who are still seeking that second or third job to help their budgets,” Nordmeier said. “We have a WorkWise Kauai Job Fair coming up Oct. 14 from 9 a.m. to noon at the Kauai War Memorial Convention Hall.”

Nordmeier said this job fair is different from other fair offerings.

“We have about 50 employers already signed up for the fair,” Nordmeier said. “These are jobs coming right from the source, meaning there are jobs out there. This does not include Panda Express, who is hiring for its new location at Hokulei Village.”

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