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Colorado Cashback: Governor Polis, Legislative Leaders Announce New $400 Colorado Dividend for Every Hardworking Colorado Taxpayer

Colorado Cashback: Governor Polis, Legislative Leaders Announce New $400 Colorado Dividend for Every Hardworking Colorado Taxpayer

DENVER - Today, Governor Jared Polis, House and Senate Legislative Leadership announced that Coloradans will receive $400 cash back this summer.

“People are paying more for everyday items like gas, groceries, and rent through no fault of their own. Instead of the government sitting on money that Coloradans earned, we want to give everyone cash back as quickly and easily as possible to provide immediate relief and empower people to do what they want to with their money,” said Governor Polis. 

Polis Administration Secures Agriculture Company for New Colorado Headquarters

Polis Administration Secures Agriculture Company for New Colorado Headquarters

The Polis Administration and the Global Business Division of Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) announced today that Greenfield Holdings, an integrated agricultural and infrastructure company, has selected Denver for its headquarters. 

Greenfield Holdings is on a growth trajectory and is developing a world-class asset base that will help facilitate the growing international demand for grain and other U.S. agricultural products. Its new headquarters in Denver will support its grain storage, handling and export facilities. 

“Colorado’s agriculture community is unmatched, and we are proud to support Colorado’s hard-working farmers and ranchers. We’re excited Greenfield will help create over 20 new good jobs here, put down roots in our beautiful state as we continue to advance and grow Colorado’s thriving agricultural industry,” said Governor Jared Polis.

Greenfield Holdings expects to create 20 net new jobs at an average annual wage of $83,725,  which is 111.33% percent of the average annual wage in Denver County. The jobs will include traders, analysts, accountants, logistics, operations, IT managers, etc. The company currently has 11 employees, five of whom are already based in Colorado.

“Denver stood out to us not only because of the competitive incentive package offered by the state and city but because of the talent pool that would be accessible to us as our company grows,” said Kyle Egbert, CFO of Greenfield Holdings. “We’re excited to engage with the state’s renowned university systems and tap into young talent as they enter the workforce.” 

“Colorado has a strong heritage in farming and ranching, and innovative companies like Greenfield Holdings help us continue our legacy as an agricultural industry leader in the western United States,” said OEDIT Executive Director Patrick Meyers. 

Greenfield Holdings is constructing a grain export facility in Louisiana and currently has grain assets established in Arkansas and Louisiana with plans for further asset construction taking place along the Mississippi River.  The establishment of the new corporate headquarters in Denver along with these facilities will allow Greenfield to continue to generate strong investment returns in the global economy, while adhering to and benefiting from Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG) stewardship.

“The Denver metropolitan area offers employers the second-most educated workforce in the country to tap into,” said Ray Gonzales, executive vice president of the Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation. “Access to this talent pool is attractive to companies like Greenfield and we are thrilled to welcome them home to Denver.” 

Colorado competed with New Orleans, Houston and Chicago as the new headquarters location. The State of Colorado will provide up to $162,974 in performance-based Job Growth Incentive Tax Credits over an eight-year period. 

Press Release: Colorado Employment Situation – March 2022

Press Release: Colorado Employment Situation – March 2022

5,800 Nonfarm Payroll Jobs Added in March;
Unemployment Rate Falls to 3.7%
 

Household survey data

According to the survey of households, Colorado’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell three-tenths of a percentage point in March to 3.7 percent. This marks the lowest rate since February 2020, when it was 2.8 percent. The national unemployment rate declined two-tenths of a percentage point in March to 3.6 percent. 

Other highlights from the household survey:

Colorado’s labor force grew by 12,300 in March to 3,211,700. The share of Coloradans participating in the labor force improved to 68.9 percent last month, the highest rate since March 2020. The state continues to experience a faster rate of recovery in the participation rate than the U.S.
 
The number of individuals employed in Colorado increased by 21,300 in March to 3,093,500, which represents 66.4 percent of the state’s 16+ population. Colorado’s employment-to-population ratio has nearly returned to pre-pandemic levels.
 
The Colorado counties with the highest unemployment rates in March were:      Huerfano (6.6%), Pueblo (5.7%), Fremont (5.2%), Las Animas (5.0%), and Rio Grande (5.0%). County-level unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted and are directly comparable to Colorado’s March unadjusted rate of 3.5 percent.
 

Establishment survey data

Employers in Colorado added 5,800 nonfarm payroll jobs from February to March for a total of 2,834,500 jobs, according to the survey of business establishments. Private sector payroll jobs increased 5,100 and government rose by 700. Over the past 23 months, Colorado has added 389,400 nonfarm payroll jobs, compared to losses totaling 374,500 in March and April 2020. That translates to a job recovery rate of 104.0 percent, which exceeds the U.S. rate of 92.8 percent.

Since May 2020, Colorado’s private sector has grown by 392,300 jobs, compared to declines of 358,800 in early 2020. That translates to a job recovery rate of 109.3 percent and outpaces the U.S. rate of 95.9 percent.

Other highlights from the establishment survey:

February estimates were revised up to 2,828,700, and the over the month change from January to February was a gain of 15,900 rather than the originally estimated increase of 14,100 (monthly revisions are based on additional responses from businesses and government agencies since the last published estimates).
 
Private industry sectors with significant job gains in March were: leisure and hospitality (~4,200), professional and business services (~1,300), and manufacturing (~1,000). Significant over the month private sector job loss occurred in construction (~2,300).
 
Since March 2021, nonfarm payroll jobs have increased 131,200, with the private sector growing by 121,400 and government adding an additional 9,800 jobs. The largest private sector job gains were in leisure and hospitality (~51,700), professional and business services (~30,300), and trade, transportation, and utilities (~14,200). There were no significant private sector over the year declines. Colorado’s rate of job growth over the past year is 4.9 percent, compared to the U.S. rate of 4.5 percent.
 
Over the year, the average workweek for all Colorado employees on private nonfarm payrolls decreased from 33.0 to 32.9 hours, while average hourly earnings grew from $31.32 to $33.85, two dollars and twelve cents more than the national average hourly earnings of $31.73.
 

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All Colorado estimates from the establishment and household surveys, including greater geographic detail, are available at: http://www.colmigateway.com. Estimates for all states and the nation are available at: http://www.bls.gov.

The April 2022 Colorado Employment Situation will be released at 8:00 AM on Friday, May 20, 2022. The full schedule of release dates for calendar year 2022 estimates is available at http://www.colmigateway.com.

 

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Technical Notes

This release provides information on industry employment and labor force statistics for March 2022, the most current estimates available from the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment. The reference period for the establishment and household surveys was the pay period or week that includes the 12th of the month.

The unemployment rate, labor force, labor force participation, total employment and the number of unemployed are based on a survey of households. The total employment estimate derived from this survey is intended to measure the number of people employed.

Nonfarm payroll jobs estimates are based on a survey of business establishments and government agencies, and are intended to measure the number of jobs, not the number of people employed. Other series based on this survey include private sector average weekly hours, average hourly earnings and average weekly earnings.

The business establishment survey covers about seven times the number of households surveyed and is therefore considered a more reliable indicator of economic conditions. Because the estimates are based on two separate surveys, one measuring jobs by worksite and the other measuring persons employed and unemployed by household, estimates based on these surveys may provide seemingly conflicting results.

 

Resources MentionedSupplemental InformationLabor Force Summary March 2022City Report March 2022County Report March 2022March 2022 Press Release

 

Press Release: Colorado Employment Situation – March 2022

Press Release: Colorado Employment Situation – March 2022

5,800 Nonfarm Payroll Jobs Added in March;
Unemployment Rate Falls to 3.7%
 

Household survey data

According to the survey of households, Colorado’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell three-tenths of a percentage point in March to 3.7 percent. This marks the lowest rate since February 2020, when it was 2.8 percent. The national unemployment rate declined two-tenths of a percentage point in March to 3.6 percent. 

Other highlights from the household survey:

Colorado’s labor force grew by 12,300 in March to 3,211,700. The share of Coloradans participating in the labor force improved to 68.9 percent last month, the highest rate since March 2020. The state continues to experience a faster rate of recovery in the participation rate than the U.S.
 
The number of individuals employed in Colorado increased by 21,300 in March to 3,093,500, which represents 66.4 percent of the state’s 16+ population. Colorado’s employment-to-population ratio has nearly returned to pre-pandemic levels.
 
The Colorado counties with the highest unemployment rates in March were:      Huerfano (6.6%), Pueblo (5.7%), Fremont (5.2%), Las Animas (5.0%), and Rio Grande (5.0%). County-level unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted and are directly comparable to Colorado’s March unadjusted rate of 3.5 percent.
 

Establishment survey data

Employers in Colorado added 5,800 nonfarm payroll jobs from February to March for a total of 2,834,500 jobs, according to the survey of business establishments. Private sector payroll jobs increased 5,100 and government rose by 700. Over the past 23 months, Colorado has added 389,400 nonfarm payroll jobs, compared to losses totaling 374,500 in March and April 2020. That translates to a job recovery rate of 104.0 percent, which exceeds the U.S. rate of 92.8 percent.

Since May 2020, Colorado’s private sector has grown by 392,300 jobs, compared to declines of 358,800 in early 2020. That translates to a job recovery rate of 109.3 percent and outpaces the U.S. rate of 95.9 percent.

Other highlights from the establishment survey:

February estimates were revised up to 2,828,700, and the over the month change from January to February was a gain of 15,900 rather than the originally estimated increase of 14,100 (monthly revisions are based on additional responses from businesses and government agencies since the last published estimates).
 
Private industry sectors with significant job gains in March were: leisure and hospitality (~4,200), professional and business services (~1,300), and manufacturing (~1,000). Significant over the month private sector job loss occurred in construction (~2,300).
 
Since March 2021, nonfarm payroll jobs have increased 131,200, with the private sector growing by 121,400 and government adding an additional 9,800 jobs. The largest private sector job gains were in leisure and hospitality (~51,700), professional and business services (~30,300), and trade, transportation, and utilities (~14,200). There were no significant private sector over the year declines. Colorado’s rate of job growth over the past year is 4.9 percent, compared to the U.S. rate of 4.5 percent.
 
Over the year, the average workweek for all Colorado employees on private nonfarm payrolls decreased from 33.0 to 32.9 hours, while average hourly earnings grew from $31.32 to $33.85, two dollars and twelve cents more than the national average hourly earnings of $31.73.
 

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All Colorado estimates from the establishment and household surveys, including greater geographic detail, are available at: http://www.colmigateway.com. Estimates for all states and the nation are available at: http://www.bls.gov.

The April 2022 Colorado Employment Situation will be released at 8:00 AM on Friday, May 20, 2022. The full schedule of release dates for calendar year 2022 estimates is available at http://www.colmigateway.com.

 

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Technical Notes

This release provides information on industry employment and labor force statistics for March 2022, the most current estimates available from the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment. The reference period for the establishment and household surveys was the pay period or week that includes the 12th of the month.

The unemployment rate, labor force, labor force participation, total employment and the number of unemployed are based on a survey of households. The total employment estimate derived from this survey is intended to measure the number of people employed.

Nonfarm payroll jobs estimates are based on a survey of business establishments and government agencies, and are intended to measure the number of jobs, not the number of people employed. Other series based on this survey include private sector average weekly hours, average hourly earnings and average weekly earnings.

The business establishment survey covers about seven times the number of households surveyed and is therefore considered a more reliable indicator of economic conditions. Because the estimates are based on two separate surveys, one measuring jobs by worksite and the other measuring persons employed and unemployed by household, estimates based on these surveys may provide seemingly conflicting results.

 

Resources MentionedSupplemental InformationLabor Force Summary March 2022City Report March 2022County Report March 2022March 2022 Press Release

 

4.7.2022: HB22-1328: Modify Main Street Business Recovery Loan Program CLIMBER in Committee Today

4.7.2022: HB22-1328: Modify Main Street Business Recovery Loan Program CLIMBER in Committee Today

For Immediate Release
April 7, 2022
Sheena KadiCommunications Director & Public Information Officersheena.kadi@state.co.us303-349-8113

HB22-1328: Modify Main Street Business Recovery Loan Program CLIMBER in Committee Today

Over 150 jobs saved to date

Denver, CO: TODAY, House Bill 22-1328: Modify Main Street Business Recovery Loan Program CLIMBER will be heard in the House Business Affairs & Labor Committee. 

HB22-1328 will extend the current length of the program, which is set to expire this year. This bill will also expand access to small businesses that do not currently meet the requirements to participate in this low interest rate working capital loan program. 

“We’re putting people back to work. We know the economic recovery from COVID will continue long after the health pandemic subsides. As one of the largest state-involved loan efforts in America to come out of the coronavirus pandemic, we are humbled to play this critical role in helping Colorado small businesses get back on their feet. The success of a business thriving through a financially-challenged pandemic depends on access to capital.”
Colorado State Treasurer Dave Young

"There are still many hurdles small businesses need to overcome. Since the introduction of the CLIMBER loan program, we have identified several ways to make this program more accessible. We want to be sure that Colorado small businesses, including the smallest ones, can get off the ground and see success. We never know which business will grow to be the next Fortune 500 company, but maybe one of this program's recipients will be. With the uncertainty around the pandemic, these grants are even more important to small businesses’ success.”
Co-Prime Bill Sponsor, Representative Brianna Titione (D-Arvada)

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www.colorado.gov/treasury

    

 

OrganaGardens Keeps Wages Equitable as a Worker Cooperative

OrganaGardens Keeps Wages Equitable as a Worker Cooperative

With high elevation, low humidity, and intense sunlight, gardening in Colorado is not for the faint of heart. Despite these challenges, OrganaGardens has been providing custom landscaping services to the Pikes Peak Colorado Springs area since 1995.

While successfully navigating the Colorado landscape is an accomplishment in itself, OrganaGardens takes their work a step further by gardening in an innovative way. By practicing the principles of “permaculture design,” their home systems serve both the aesthetic and functional needs of their clients. These sustainable systems include rain gardens, erosion control, home food systems, and more, all while minimizing maintenance and water needs.

While gardening is their passion, so too was building an organization that would ultimately further benefit their employees. 

OrganaGardens started as an LLC, where founders Becky Elder and Brian Fritz consistently worked alongside other gardeners who held their own LLCs. “This model is not like a typical business structure, so the founders started researching what other options look like,” said Rachel Ribich, Lead Gardener at OrganaGardens. “Luckily, the State of Colorado educates around employee ownership and cooperative structures, so the founders started moving in that direction.” 

The founders recognized that their model, while not a traditional one, worked best for their needs and officially became a worker cooperative in May of 2021 with the support of the Employee Ownership Grant.

For OrganaGardens, a worker cooperative made sense. The opportunity to pool together resources, labor, tools, and skill sets made their operations sustainable and effective. Becoming one entity fostered and streamlined what they could do together - and helped the business grow, specialize their services, and keep up with demand long-term.

Having an owner mindset is imperative in any employee ownership model. For the gardeners at OrganaGardens, this mindset is a part of them already. In addition to being an employee-owner, each gardener also holds their own LLC. While the owners could operate individually, the cooperative model offers an impactful way for them to share resources and clients while leveraging one another - growing their own businesses, as well as the cooperative at large.

The gardeners also hold a specific leadership function for the business. Owners regularly come together weekly to share knowledge, meet on important topics, and vote on the direction of the organization.

Since becoming a cooperative, OrganaGardens has seen something outside their products and offerings (and plants!) grow - their wages.

“Our wages are significantly above minimum wage, and we were able to do that as a cooperative to come together and pool those resources,” said Rachel. “We’ve been able to raise our rate and our wages for our employees. One of our highest goals is to offer a fair and equitable livable wage…We are making enough money to truly support ourselves, and I think as an employee-owned cooperative, we've been able to focus on that.”

Since instilling the cooperative model, the organization has been refining their process and learning more about what it means to be an employee-owned company. They are navigating the nuances of taxes, refining their bylaws, and streamlining their approval and decision making processes. Rachel notes that they appreciate all of the education and support they received throughout their conversion - especially the organizations that helped them craft their bylaws, and the Employee Ownership Grant that helped cover the technical support necessary to become employee-owned.

Despite challenges along the way, Rachel expresses that the benefits of employee ownership are well worth the effort. To hear OrganaGarden’s journey first-hand, watch our video interview with Rachel.

OrganaGardens was an awardee of the Employee Ownership Office’s Employee Ownership Grant. If your business is considering making the conversion, learn more about how our grant and Tax Credit Program can help cover your transition costs.

 

Press Release: Colorado Occupational Employment and Wages — 2021

Press Release: Colorado Occupational Employment and Wages — 2021

The Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS) program is a Federal-State cooperative program that provides estimates of employment and wages for over 800 non-military detailed occupations in 22 major occupational groups. Every year, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, in partnership with the Bureau of Labor Statistics, collects and publishes occupation and wage data for the State of Colorado and for ten substate regions: seven Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) and three Balance of State (BOS) Areas.
For information regarding the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on OEWS data, see www.bls.gov/covid19/effects-of-covid-19-pandemic-on-occupational-employ…

 

Statewide Highlights
Workers in the State of Colorado had an average (mean) hourly wage of $30.24 in 2021, about 8 percent above the US average of $28.01, according to the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment and the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. The statewide median hourly wage  for all covered employment was $23.05 compared to the US median of $22.00.

Statewide Occupational Employment and Wages
The occupational groups with the most workers were office and administrative support (313,280 workers), sales and related (292,670), and food preparation and serving related occupations (223,030). These three groups accounted for just under 32 percent of total covered employment. Management occupations had the highest average wage, while food preparation and serving related occupations had the lowest (see Table 1).

Regional Occupational Employment
The most common occupations statewide were retail salespersons (78,650 workers), fast food and counter workers (68,890), and cashiers (53,550), and these were also the top three occupations in most of the substate areas (see Table 2).

Go to www.colmigateway.com/admin/gsipub/htmlarea/uploads/OEWSregions-statewid… for a map of Colorado’s MSAs and BOS Areas.Regional Occupational Wages
The Boulder MSA had the highest overall average and median wages and the Eastern & Southern Colorado BOS Area had the lowest (see Table 3). Both Boulder and Denver had average and median wages that are higher than the statewide average and median (see Table 1).

Statewide Location Quotients
A location quotient (LQ) allows us to explore the occupational make-up of a state, MSA, or BOS Area by comparing the composition of jobs in an area relative to the national average. For example, an LQ of 2.0 indicates that an occupation accounts for twice the share of employment in an area than it does nationally.
Compared to the US, Colorado demonstrated a higher share of employment in life, physical, and social science (LQ of 1.52), architecture and engineering (1.51), computer and mathematical (1.39), business and financial operations (1.31), and construction and extraction (1.26) occupations and a lower share of employment in production (0.62), farming, fishing, and forestry (0.73), management (0.77), and healthcare support (0.78) occupations. See Table 4 for detailed occupations with the highest LQs.

Regional Location Quotients 
The occupations with the highest concentrations of employment in each substate area were physicists in the Boulder MSA (LQ 30.94), religious workers, all other in the Colorado Springs MSA (10.01), geoscientists in the Denver-Aurora-Lakewood MSA (6.09), conservation scientists in the Fort Collins MSA (24.84), service unit operators, oil and gas in the Grand Junction MSA (17.69) and in the Greeley MSA (41.89), substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors in the Pueblo MSA (4.55), graders and sorters, agricultural products in the Eastern & Southern Colorado BOS Area (21.20), rock splitters, quarry in the Southwest Colorado BOS Area (17.62), and loading and moving machine operators, underground mining in the Northwest Colorado BOS Area (16.43). More location quotients are available at www.colmigateway.com (Products & Resources: Data OR Data Trends > Employment and Wage Data > Occupation Data: LMI Gateway Related Items).Spotlight on: Transportation and Material-Moving Occupations
The Transportation and Material-Moving group includes occupations such as heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers, stockers and order fillers, flight attendants, bus drivers, locomotive engineers, wellhead pumpers, and conveyor operators and tenders. There were 193,860 workers employed in this group in Colorado in 2021, with an average hourly wage of $21.88 and a median hourly wage of $18.41.

New Occupations in the 2018 Revision of the Standard Occupational Classification
The May 2021 estimates are the first OEWS estimates based solely on survey data collected using the 2018 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC). With the May 2021 estimates release, OEWS is publishing data for most 2018 SOC detailed occupations. For all 2018 SOC titles and definitions, please see the BLS 2018 SOC page.

The Colorado Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics Survey
In Colorado, 3,736 businesses were initially surveyed beginning in November of 2020 and 3,894 were initially surveyed beginning in May of 2021. After excluding establishments that were out of business or out of scope, a total of 81.4 percent of 7,221 businesses provided information on the job titles and wages of their employees. These data were combined with responses from the previous two years (four biannual surveys) to produce the May 2021 occupational estimates highlighted in this document.
OEWS data are available from BLS at www.bls.gov/oes/tables.htm and on the CDLE LMI website at www.colmigateway.com (Products & Resources: Data OR Data Trends > Employment and Wage Data > Occupation Data: LMI Gateway Related Items). Industry-specific data (NAICS Sector and 3- and 4-digit, Excel files) are available at www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_research_estimates.htm
 

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Technical Note
The OEWS survey is a semiannual survey measuring occupational employment and wage rates for wage and salary workers in nonfarm establishments in the United States. The OEWS data available from BLS include:

cross-industry occupational employment and wage estimates for the nation and for over 580 areas, including states and the District of Columbia, MSAs, nonmetropolitan areas, and territories;
national industry-specific estimates at the NAICS sector, 3-dgit, most 4-digit, and selected 5- and 6-digit industry levels; and 
national estimates by ownership across all industries and for schools and hospitals.
OEWS data are available at www.bls.gov/oes/tables.htm.
OEWS estimates are constructed from a sample of about 1.1 million establishments. Each year, two semiannual panels of approximately 179,000 to 187,000 sampled establishments are contacted, one panel in May and the other in November. Responses are obtained by Internet or other electronic means, mail, email, telephone, or personal visit. The May 2021 estimates are based on responses from six semiannual panels collected over a 3-year period: May 2021, November 2020, May 2020, November 2019, May 2019, and November 2018. The unweighted sampled employment of 82 million across all six semiannual panels represents approximately 62 percent of total national employment. The overall national response rate for the six panels, based on the 50 states and the District of Columbia, is 67.2 percent based on establishments and 64.5 percent based on weighted sampled employment. For more information about OEWS concepts and methodology, go to www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_tec.htm.

The May 2021 estimates are the first OEWS estimates based entirely on survey data collected using the 2018 SOC. The May 2019 and May 2020 estimates were based on a combination of survey data collected using the 2010 SOC and survey data collected using the 2018 SOC and used a hybrid of the two classification systems. 

May 2021 OEWS data are available for most 2018 SOC detailed occupations. To improve data quality, the OEWS program has replaced some 2018 SOC detailed occupations with SOC broad occupations or OEWS-specific aggregations. Information about the SOC system is available on the BLS website at www.bls.gov/soc and information about the NAICS system is available at www.bls.gov/bls/naics.htm.New estimation methodology
With the May 2021 estimates, the OEWS program has implemented a new estimation method. This new model-based method, called MB3, has advantages over the previous estimation method, as described in the Monthly Labor Review article “Model-Based Estimates for the Occupational Employment Statistics program.” Technical information is available in the Survey Methods and Reliability Statement for the MB3 Research Estimates of OEWS.Substate area definitions
The substate area data published in this release reflect the standards and definitions established by the US Office of Management and Budget.Additional information
Answers to frequently asked questions about OEWS, including uses of OEWS data, are available at www.bls.gov/oes/oes_ques.htm.

Press Release: Colorado Occupational Employment and Wages — 2021

Press Release: Colorado Occupational Employment and Wages — 2021

The Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics (OEWS) program is a Federal-State cooperative program that provides estimates of employment and wages for over 800 non-military detailed occupations in 22 major occupational groups. Every year, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment, in partnership with the Bureau of Labor Statistics, collects and publishes occupation and wage data for the State of Colorado and for ten substate regions: seven Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) and three Balance of State (BOS) Areas.
For information regarding the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on OEWS data, see www.bls.gov/covid19/effects-of-covid-19-pandemic-on-occupational-employ…

 

Statewide Highlights
Workers in the State of Colorado had an average (mean) hourly wage of $30.24 in 2021, about 8 percent above the US average of $28.01, according to the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment and the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. The statewide median hourly wage  for all covered employment was $23.05 compared to the US median of $22.00.

Statewide Occupational Employment and Wages
The occupational groups with the most workers were office and administrative support (313,280 workers), sales and related (292,670), and food preparation and serving related occupations (223,030). These three groups accounted for just under 32 percent of total covered employment. Management occupations had the highest average wage, while food preparation and serving related occupations had the lowest (see Table 1).

Regional Occupational Employment
The most common occupations statewide were retail salespersons (78,650 workers), fast food and counter workers (68,890), and cashiers (53,550), and these were also the top three occupations in most of the substate areas (see Table 2).

Go to www.colmigateway.com/admin/gsipub/htmlarea/uploads/OEWSregions-statewid… for a map of Colorado’s MSAs and BOS Areas.Regional Occupational Wages
The Boulder MSA had the highest overall average and median wages and the Eastern & Southern Colorado BOS Area had the lowest (see Table 3). Both Boulder and Denver had average and median wages that are higher than the statewide average and median (see Table 1).

Statewide Location Quotients
A location quotient (LQ) allows us to explore the occupational make-up of a state, MSA, or BOS Area by comparing the composition of jobs in an area relative to the national average. For example, an LQ of 2.0 indicates that an occupation accounts for twice the share of employment in an area than it does nationally.
Compared to the US, Colorado demonstrated a higher share of employment in life, physical, and social science (LQ of 1.52), architecture and engineering (1.51), computer and mathematical (1.39), business and financial operations (1.31), and construction and extraction (1.26) occupations and a lower share of employment in production (0.62), farming, fishing, and forestry (0.73), management (0.77), and healthcare support (0.78) occupations. See Table 4 for detailed occupations with the highest LQs.

Regional Location Quotients 
The occupations with the highest concentrations of employment in each substate area were physicists in the Boulder MSA (LQ 30.94), religious workers, all other in the Colorado Springs MSA (10.01), geoscientists in the Denver-Aurora-Lakewood MSA (6.09), conservation scientists in the Fort Collins MSA (24.84), service unit operators, oil and gas in the Grand Junction MSA (17.69) and in the Greeley MSA (41.89), substance abuse, behavioral disorder, and mental health counselors in the Pueblo MSA (4.55), graders and sorters, agricultural products in the Eastern & Southern Colorado BOS Area (21.20), rock splitters, quarry in the Southwest Colorado BOS Area (17.62), and loading and moving machine operators, underground mining in the Northwest Colorado BOS Area (16.43). More location quotients are available at www.colmigateway.com (Products & Resources: Data OR Data Trends > Employment and Wage Data > Occupation Data: LMI Gateway Related Items).Spotlight on: Transportation and Material-Moving Occupations
The Transportation and Material-Moving group includes occupations such as heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers, stockers and order fillers, flight attendants, bus drivers, locomotive engineers, wellhead pumpers, and conveyor operators and tenders. There were 193,860 workers employed in this group in Colorado in 2021, with an average hourly wage of $21.88 and a median hourly wage of $18.41.

New Occupations in the 2018 Revision of the Standard Occupational Classification
The May 2021 estimates are the first OEWS estimates based solely on survey data collected using the 2018 Standard Occupational Classification (SOC). With the May 2021 estimates release, OEWS is publishing data for most 2018 SOC detailed occupations. For all 2018 SOC titles and definitions, please see the BLS 2018 SOC page.

The Colorado Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics Survey
In Colorado, 3,736 businesses were initially surveyed beginning in November of 2020 and 3,894 were initially surveyed beginning in May of 2021. After excluding establishments that were out of business or out of scope, a total of 81.4 percent of 7,221 businesses provided information on the job titles and wages of their employees. These data were combined with responses from the previous two years (four biannual surveys) to produce the May 2021 occupational estimates highlighted in this document.
OEWS data are available from BLS at www.bls.gov/oes/tables.htm and on the CDLE LMI website at www.colmigateway.com (Products & Resources: Data OR Data Trends > Employment and Wage Data > Occupation Data: LMI Gateway Related Items). Industry-specific data (NAICS Sector and 3- and 4-digit, Excel files) are available at www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_research_estimates.htm
 

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Technical Note
The OEWS survey is a semiannual survey measuring occupational employment and wage rates for wage and salary workers in nonfarm establishments in the United States. The OEWS data available from BLS include:

cross-industry occupational employment and wage estimates for the nation and for over 580 areas, including states and the District of Columbia, MSAs, nonmetropolitan areas, and territories;
national industry-specific estimates at the NAICS sector, 3-dgit, most 4-digit, and selected 5- and 6-digit industry levels; and 
national estimates by ownership across all industries and for schools and hospitals.
OEWS data are available at www.bls.gov/oes/tables.htm.
OEWS estimates are constructed from a sample of about 1.1 million establishments. Each year, two semiannual panels of approximately 179,000 to 187,000 sampled establishments are contacted, one panel in May and the other in November. Responses are obtained by Internet or other electronic means, mail, email, telephone, or personal visit. The May 2021 estimates are based on responses from six semiannual panels collected over a 3-year period: May 2021, November 2020, May 2020, November 2019, May 2019, and November 2018. The unweighted sampled employment of 82 million across all six semiannual panels represents approximately 62 percent of total national employment. The overall national response rate for the six panels, based on the 50 states and the District of Columbia, is 67.2 percent based on establishments and 64.5 percent based on weighted sampled employment. For more information about OEWS concepts and methodology, go to www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_tec.htm.

The May 2021 estimates are the first OEWS estimates based entirely on survey data collected using the 2018 SOC. The May 2019 and May 2020 estimates were based on a combination of survey data collected using the 2010 SOC and survey data collected using the 2018 SOC and used a hybrid of the two classification systems. 

May 2021 OEWS data are available for most 2018 SOC detailed occupations. To improve data quality, the OEWS program has replaced some 2018 SOC detailed occupations with SOC broad occupations or OEWS-specific aggregations. Information about the SOC system is available on the BLS website at www.bls.gov/soc and information about the NAICS system is available at www.bls.gov/bls/naics.htm.New estimation methodology
With the May 2021 estimates, the OEWS program has implemented a new estimation method. This new model-based method, called MB3, has advantages over the previous estimation method, as described in the Monthly Labor Review article “Model-Based Estimates for the Occupational Employment Statistics program.” Technical information is available in the Survey Methods and Reliability Statement for the MB3 Research Estimates of OEWS.Substate area definitions
The substate area data published in this release reflect the standards and definitions established by the US Office of Management and Budget.Additional information
Answers to frequently asked questions about OEWS, including uses of OEWS data, are available at www.bls.gov/oes/oes_ques.htm.

Social Equity Licensee Highlight: High Demand Delivery

Social Equity Licensee Highlight: High Demand Delivery

The Cannabis Business Office's Social Equity Licensee Highlight series dives into the stories of social equity licensees currently operating in the cannabis space. By exploring the unique backgrounds, challenges, and opportunities of these owners, our case studies serve as unique window into the cannabis industry and a way for businesses to learn from one another.

High Demand Delivery is devoted to the task of distribution of cannabis in Colorado by providing flexibility and reliability to their partners. The business developed a delivery solution with dispensary profitability in mind.

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What sparked your interest in the cannabis industry?

Each owner at High Demand Delivery has their own specific story of what brought them to the industry. Overall, it was a combination of serial entrepreneurship and legacy participation, as well as the fight towards normalization of cannabis and black-ownership in this regulated industry that made our participation a must. 

 

How will your work impact the community? 

Community is very important to us, and giving back to the community through contributions is key. Last year, we were able to donate financial support to the Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) association and Movement 5280. For a new startup with one contract at the time, this was definitely a milestone. 

In addition, bringing more people of color from the community into the industry through job creation and ownership is a priority. We have diverse hiring practices that focus on employment opportunities for community members that have been impacted by the war on drugs, veterans, and women. As our business grows, we will continue to support the community with a focus on athletic and educational sponsorships and financial contributions to community organizations that support youth.  

 

Is there anything interesting about your backstory that you’d like to share?

Before starting High Demand Delivery, co-founders Terrence Hewing and Sarah Woodson were both negatively impacted by cannabis probation prior to starting their first cannabis ancillary business, Kush & Canvases, LLC. Around this same time, co-founders Cliff and Lillian Stokes were owners of a 420-friendly, black car limo service called High End Transportation. Cliff and Sarah saw the opportunity for a strategic partnership in 2016, where they referred customers to one another. 

After five years of working together and collaborating, COVID-19 caused High End Transportation to close and left Kush & Canvases fighting to stay open. When cannabis delivery finally became a licensed business type, the already existing synergy and business history made the partnership a wonderful opportunity. 

 

Please share something unique about your company. 

We are the first social equity licensed transport company and  the first operational social equity transporter and delivery company in Colorado. Since June 2021, we have completed just under 1,000 deliveries. We have a full eco-friendly fleet of seven vehicles and are 100% minority-owned, 25% veteran-owned, and 50% woman-owned. 

 

What challenges do you face as a small business and social equity licensee?

As a new delivery company and small business, our goal is to grow and scale. Right now, we have a medium-sized fleet of seven electric vehicles, multiple social equity partners in our business, 15+ years of logistical experience, and 20+ years of business experience. Despite our business acumen, assets, and being fully licensed, we still have yet to secure a client in Denver. It almost appears that being a social equity license holder has created this road block and became our biggest challenge in securing additional contracts. We have personally reached out to over 60 stores and have had 24 meetings. The majority of the stores we have met with are currently delivering and have opted to stay with in-house delivery. However, we continue to reach out and make new connections to secure more contacts.

 

What would you change about the Colorado cannabis industry if you could?

Less than 9% of the stores in Denver have opted into delivery. An additional license type that is not reliant on existing retail stores would be the most important change for social equity in the Colorado cannabis industry. Warehouse/non-retail storefront delivery (compared to retail-only delivery) is the last real remaining opportunity to be a part of the plant touching market. This type of delivery allows a business to purchase at wholesale then deliver directly to customers, instead of delivering goods already priced at retail prices. Especially since the majority of all new social equity licenses are non premise transporters with delivery permits, and the majority of the transports do not have contacts! 

In addition, because capital is the biggest burden for social equity applicants, fees for Social Equity have to be reduced - and in certain cases waived - for a period of time to help social equity applicants.

And finally, more cities have to open up for social equity applicants. Denver - which is the only city that is focused on a robust social equity program - must remove distance restrictions and setbacks, as well as allow applicants to open new retail stores in neighborhoods of undo concentration through the exclusivity period. Without this change, it has been a pattern that only social equity applicants that are well funded and a part of the existing industry prior to social equity will benefit. Every new store in Denver is attached to a well funded existing member of industry that happens to qualify for social equity.

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We are developing a case studies series to tell the stories of social equity licensees currently in operation in the cannabis space. If you are an operational social equity licensed cannabis business, please complete our form so we may consider you for a future edition. The next two questions are screening questions. Additional questions will appear if you are eligible.

Apply to be featured

Colorado Hospital Profits Among Nation’s Highest for Third Consecutive Year

Colorado Hospital Profits Among Nation’s Highest for Third Consecutive Year

Denver Metro area hospitals posted combined profits of nearly $1.4 billion in 2020; rural hospitals faced financial devastation without economic stimulus funding

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 30, 2022

Media ContactsMarc WilliamsDept. of Health Care Policy & Financing
720-626-0801 (cell)

Denver, CO - Colorado hospitals continue to rank among the most profitable in the  nation, making Colorado one of the most expensive states for hospital care according to the Hospital Insights Report released today by the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy & Financing (Department). Today’s report synthesizes information and findings from six recent reports on Colorado hospital financial positions.

Colorado hospital data indicates that the increase in hospital profits in pre-pandemic years largely went toward building reserves, expanding market share, and capital investments. Hospitals also received an estimated $1.07 billion in federal stimulus (a 263% increase to patient service profits). Most hospitals/systems (41 out of 45) increased or maintained days cash on hand reserves from 2019 to 2020. 

“We are all thankful that Colorado’s hospitals were able to address the unprecedented challenges they have faced due to COVID-19. As we shift from pandemic response to endemic management, we have an opportunity not only to commit to hospital preparedness and workforce readiness to be ready for future crises, but also to continue our work to make care more accessible, affordable, and equitable,” said Lt. Governor Dianne Primavera, Director of the Office of Saving People Money on Health Care. 

Colorado and Alaska are the only two states to rank in the top 10 for all four measures of hospital cost, price and profit. While national ranking on hospital profits remains high, they are trending lower since 2018 compared to other states. 
 

Measure
2018
2019
2020

Price/Patient

5th Highest

4th Highest

6th Highest

Cost/Patient

8th Highest

8th Highest

10th Highest

Profit/Patient

3rd Highest

4th Highest

7th Highest

Total Profit

1st Highest

5th Highest

6th Highest

The higher profits are also partly due to higher reimbursements from Health First Colorado (Colorado’s Medicaid program) and health care coverage expansions, which when combined create a lower uninsured rate of approximately 6.5%. Uncompensated care remained relatively flat during the pandemic despite the economic downturn. Concurrent with coverage expansion, commercial insurance carriers reimburse hospitals $1.66 for every dollar of hospital costs driving the overall patient service payment-to-cost ratio to $1.02 and total profit margins of 9.3%. This means Colorado hospitals are overcharging commercial insurance carriers (and therefore their employer and individual clients) more than they need to cover the underpayments of public programs. The continued trend of high hospital profits ultimately results in health care costs consuming more of Coloradans’ dollars and the total state budget.

In 2020, total profit margins were 9.3% compared to 12.0% in 2019, despite the revenue volatility and unprecedented nature of the pandemic. The vast majority of Colorado hospitals (92.6%) did not record losses or a decrease in total profits from 2019 to 2020, when including federal stimulus dollars.

All national health systems with hospitals in Colorado earned a profit for every pandemic period reviewed. UCHealth and HCA HealthONE realized higher total profits than before the pandemic. UCHealth’s total profits increased from 10% in 2019, to 14.7% in 2020, to 17.4% through September 2021, with earnings on track to double between 2019 and 2021 (UCHealth $540 million in profits for 2019, $845 million in profits for 2020, and 2021 through Q3, $878 million in profits), likely on track to achieve $1 billion in profits for 2021. It’s important to note that, as a system, HCA HealthONE returned more than $6 billion of the federal stimulus dollars it received, including more than $100 million provided to its Colorado hospitals.

However, a different picture emerges when analyzing Colorado’s rural hospitals. Had it not been for federal stimulus and other non-patient sources of profit, rural hospitals would have barely broken even (0.8% patient service margins). Federal stimulus and other non-patient forms of revenue are why rural hospitals were profitable (8.9% total margins). The Department’s analysis demonstrates that rural and frontier hospitals are vulnerable to patient, revenue and expense volatility caused by pandemic surges and related economic downturns due to their low margins.

The Hospital Insights Report demonstrates a continued opportunity for Colorado hospitals to partner with the state to reduce their commercial prices and lower their overall costs, including reviewing hospitals under each system to address outliers. There is also opportunity to study and learn how hospitals spent their 2020 federal pandemic stimulus dollars to further shape future stimulus policy.

“We have a shared goal to learn from this experience, evaluate the present and create new policy to prevent the need to activate or even consider crisis standards of care in Colorado again,'' said Kim Bimestefer, executive director for the Department. “This new insights report identifies opportunities for partnership that strengthen hospitals’ pandemic readiness in a way that addresses community needs while also identifying system sustainability and affordability priorities.” 

More information is needed to better evaluate hospital community investments. Colorado hospitals invested $836.3 million in community benefits in 2020, not including Medicaid underpayment shortfalls. These community investments equal 6% of hospital patient revenue received. Unfortunately, the Department does not have enough detailed information to identify where and how the state’s nonprofit, tax exempt hospitals spend their community benefit dollars, nor can it properly determine if those community benefit investments match each community's identified needs.

For more information on the 2022 Hospital Insights Report, along with previous hospital financial analysis, please visit the Department’s Hospital Reports Hub webpage.

Please register for the Colorado Health Cabinet Policy Summit happening this Thursday, March 31 at 3 p.m. (MT) where the Hospital Insights Report and the state’s pandemic readiness roadmap will be discussed in greater detail.

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About the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy & Financing: The Department administers Health First Colorado (Colorado's Medicaid program), Child Health Plan Plus, and other programs for Coloradans who qualify. For more information about the Department, please visit HCPF.Colorado.gov.

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