RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO) — If Rapid City doesn’t find enough seasonal workers, summer might look a little different this year. The Regional Airport, public pools, the civic center, and other recreational businesses are looking for your help.
Hundreds of empty jobs in Rapid City have city officials concerned. Craig Baltzer is the Director of the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center, soon to be called the Monument. He’s never seen a job shortage like this before.
“This is more than double the problem that it’s been in the past for us. And we know it’s true with other businesses in town. We know it’s true all over the place, we know it’s not just the Civic Center and you got to get creative to work around it and just do everything you can,” Baltzer said.
With the new Summit Arena going up, it also requires more help. Baltzer says he’s hiring for all different types of jobs: from managers to busboys.
“It’s been a struggle and we are pretty full with events so it’s not that our business has slackened off but there are very few employees to go get and we’re trying out best to get them,” Baltzer said.
Emily Carstensen is the recreation specialist for the Rapid City Aquatic Center.
“It’s very stressful, this last year has taken a toll on my mental health, emotional health. It’s not easy but it’s a part of the job too so I’m trying to get through it but it’s very difficult to deal with, absolutely,” Carstensen said.
Carstensen says she is still looking for at least 35 more lifeguards.
“We did raise our pay from $11.40 an hour to $13.86 an hour to try to be competitive with the other places that are hiring,” Carstensen said.
They’re hoping a boost in pay brings a boost in applications. It’s a common struggle for the city and businesses all over town.
The Rapid City Aquatics center is also reimbursing lifeguards, who take the certifications course, $100.
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