Just talked to Tony Wendel, a colleague of Dallas at the Oregon Employment Department. (Dallas is on vacation and may be able to add to this thread next week.) To look at agriculture and tourism, here's what Mr. Wendel said: In 2009, in Hood River County, the estimated average annual employment in agriculture was 2380 jobs. (Interestingly, it's an estimate because the Employment Department only gets hard data from farms with a payroll higher than $20,000 per quarter.) In lesiure/hospitality, it was 1751 jobs. That's not tourism straight up; it would include non-tourism business and tourism's impact is felt in other sectors as well.
In Wasco County, the jobs numbers were 1740 for ag and 1156 for leisure/hospitality. In Sherman County, it was 140 for ag and 131 for leisure.
Of course, jobs are only one measure of economic impact. There's also income generated by those jobs, sales and revenue of businesses, how much is paid to local governments in taxes or fees, and probably many more important factors.
Maybe some lingering questions from this program are how windmills impact the scenery and wildlife in the Gorge — and will that have an economic impact?
posted 2 years, 11 months ago
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