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With increased unemployment insurance ending, are increased incentive wages to follow?

“What do I have to say to any of those people who are out there drawing unemployment? Probably hurry up and get a job, while the pay wage is high.”
Updated: Jun. 18, 2021 at 5:01 PM MDT
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — For months now, Blue Lakes Boulevard has been littered with signs outside of many businesses.

From ‘now hiring’ to ‘increased wages and benefits offered,’ Twin Falls businesses are pleading to get people back into the job market.

Well, next week, when benefits are officially over, the assumption is that the pleading will be no longer.

“I don’t know what it is going to look like. I can tell you what I’m hoping for. I’m hoping for more applicants to come in and be willing to work,” said Twin Falls Chick-Fil-A HR manager Riley Winger. “We’ve had a lot of high schoolers, which is not a bad thing, we’ve had a lot of the 16 and older coming and applying. But we would definitely benefit from more of the adults.”

To compete with the unemployment wages, that top out near $15 an hour, many businesses have increased entry-level wages as high as $13 an hour.

But according to staffing experts in the area, those incentives may not be around too much longer.

“Well, we’ve studied the market a lot, trends tend to go up and down,” said Gem State Staffing branch manager Tina Wilson. “I know that, typically, wages increased up to three dollars an hour in the past couple of months. I think that as we start filling some of these positions, we’re going to see that come back down.”

With uncertainty about how long the increased wages and benefits will stay around, experts in the area have some advice.

“What do I have to say to any of those people who are out there drawing unemployment? Probably hurry up and get a job, while the pay wage is high,” Wilson said. “I anticipate that it’s probably going to come back to normal in a couple of weeks.”

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