It's unusual to talk about a labor shortage in a time when the economy is still shakily recovering. But, that's the situation in the Peoria area. Michael Sloan of the Economic Development Council's specialized manufacturing group says a machinist and welder shortage began late last year.
Even during the recession in 2008 and 2009, Sloan says, the Peoria and Tazewell County area needed industrial maintenance people with electrical and mechanical skills. He says that need has not gone away. Sloan says the number of open positions varies. At times the shortage has reached several hundred and manufacturing firms have had to turn down business because they did not have the workers. He says his group has been working on labor shortages since 2005 and is holding an educators day Saturday at the Peoria Civic Center and a career and jobs fair for High School students in October.
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