Saturday, March 2, 2024

Business News: GF home sales…naming rights & UND hire

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For the first time in more than two decades, Mexico last year surpassed China as the leading source of goods imported by the United States. The shift reflects the growing tensions between Washington and Beijing as well as U.S. efforts to import from countries that are friendlier and closer to home. The value of goods imported by the United States from Mexico rose nearly 5% from 2022 to 2023, to more than $475 billion.   (AP)

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A majority of U.S. taxpayers feel they pay too much in taxes. That’s according to a poll from the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy and The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. About two thirds of U.S. taxpayers say they spend “too much” on federal income taxes. About 7 in 10 say the same about local property taxes, while roughly 6 in 10 feel that way about state sales tax. Adults who are 60 and older are more likely than younger adults to perceive taxes, generally, as fair.   (AP)

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The Labor Market Information Center has updated county-level cost of living data around the state. The numbers allows users to see comparative living costs for 24 household types and seven fundamental living expense categories: food, housing, health care, transportation, child care, other necessities, and taxes. The report suggests a single adult in Grand Forks County would need an annual income of $25,384 dollars based on Q4 prices.  That’s $459 dollars less than the statewide average.

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Minnesota manufacturers report an improved outlook for business in 2024.  Conducted between November and December the survey respondents indicated they expected to see modest expansion in profits…orders…productivity…and service production levels.  Labor availability remains a concern – although the outlook shows some improvement.  The outlook suggests 77% expect profits to be the same or higher in 2024, compared to 48% in 2023.

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Only 32 home sales were reported in Grand Forks / East Grand Forks during January.  The figures from the Grand Forks Area Association of Realtors suggest that was the fewest number of sales for the month since 2018.  The average sales price climbed to $299,440 dollars.  There were 34 sales in January 2023 and 51 in 2022.  The numbers do not include private sales of homes…townhomes…and condos.

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Delta wrapped up 2023 as the top air carrier in North Dakota.  Delta captured 40% of the market share hauling nearly 451,000 passengers last year.  United captured 26% of the market share followed by Allegiant at 20%.  American…Frontier…and Sun Country rounded out the boarding market.

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One of the recipients of a business expansion grant in Minnesota is L & M Supply in Grand Rapids.  The funding through DEED’s Job Creation Fund and Minnesota Investment Fund will help build a new 210,000 square foot distribution center.  The size of the combined award is $2.79 million dollars.  The total project cost is $55.6 million dollars.  L & M Supply specializes in farm and home products with 12 stores across northern Minnesota…Wisconsin…and Michigan.

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The Grand Forks Park Board has reached a deal on the naming rights to the Eagles Arena Press Box.  PS Garage Doors will pay the Park District $30,000 dollars for the rights for the next 15 years.  The board has approved spending up to $65,000 dollars for the project.  Construction will occur during the offseason with the goal of having the press box ready by the fall of 2024.

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The University of North Dakota Athletics announced the hiring of Derek Stein as the Director of Strength and Conditioning.  Stein joins the Fighting Hawks after spending the past three seasons as the Director of Football Performance at Eastern Illinois.  Stein earned his master’s degree in kinesiology and sports studies with a sports administration concentration. He holds a bachelor’s degree in health, fitness and recreation resources with a kinesiology concentration from George Mason University.

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The Director of the Fargo Cass Public Health Department is calling it quits.  Desi Fleming will retire this summer after 32 years with the department.  She began her career at FCPH as a public health nurse in March of 1992.  She has led the department since 2018.

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Adult dancers in Washington state are fighting for statewide worker protections that advocates say would be the most comprehensive in the U.S. The industry has such wide regulation gaps that dancers have had to fend for themselves for safety in the workplace. The proposals would require at least one dedicated security guard at each club as well as employee training on preventing sexual harassment and assault.  (AP)

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From Flamin’ Hot Cheetos to Sweet Heat Starburst, America’s snacks are getting spicier. Now, Coca-Cola wants in on the trend. On Wednesday, the Atlanta beverage giant introduced Coca-Cola Spiced, the first new permanent offering to its North American portfolio in three years. Coca-Cola Spiced and Coca-Cola Spiced Zero Sugar will go on sale in the U.S. and Canada on Feb. 19.   (AP)

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