Construction on the Hebgen intake structure project has continued successfully through late 2012.
"We have been closely monitoring the cofferdam since high stresses were discovered in August 2012," said David Hoffman, director of external affairs for PPL Montana. "The dewatering wells that were installed have been effective at reducing stresses on the cofferdam and no additional concerns have arisen."
Google's infrastructure investment in Iowa rises to $1.1 billion with the mid-November announcement to expand its existing data center there (built in 2009).
There are nine other major data centers in Iowa, including a Microsoft operation. And Altoona, Iowa, officials will announce any day the secret identity of a company planning to build yet another data center, a $1.5 billion beast — my guess, Facebook.
Happy Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas, Iowa.
A North Dakota State University study projects Williston’s service population will hit the 50,000 mark by 2017.
Nancy Hodur, PhD, presented the findings to the Williston City Commission.
Hodur and Dean Bangsund, researchers in the Agribusiness and Applied Economics Department at NDSU, were hired by the commission to estimate the City’s current and five year projected populations. Williston requested the study due to the dramatic growth caused by the oil boom so it can adequately prepare for the future.
Lodging taxes in Billings are up dramatically, according to The Billings Chamber of Commerce/Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) and Tourism Business Improvement District (TBID). Year over year, collections are up 21% through the second quarter of 2012, with a 24% increase in first quarter and an 18% increase in the second. Increased lodging collections are an excellent indicator of the health of the local economy in general, so numbers like these are positive to report.
A lot of potential new business growth in the Billings area was the highlight of the joint executive committee meetings of the Big Sky Economic Development Authority (EDA) and the Big Sky Economic Development Corporation (EDC), last week.
Among the announcements were:
—Aspen Air, a Calgary-based company with a plant in Lockwood, is significantly expanding their Lockwood facility;
North Dakota banks have a problem in having too much money in deposits, reported the Daily Yonder. In "reaping the rewards of the oil boom," in western North Dakota, "Lease payments, royalties, and money from property sales are pouring in to the small independent banks of the many small towns in the region."
That' a problem because "banks make money from loans, not from deposits."
According to the Daily Yonder deposits for some banks are over 20 percent annually, an "unheard of" rate.
Bob Hanson, a rancher from White Sulphur Springs, has been re-elected president of the Montana Farm Bureau Federation. Bruce Wright, a farmer from Bozeman, was re-elected as vice president of the state's largest agricultural organization.
Harris Wheat, a cattle rancher from Dillon, was re-elected as District 2 Director; Ronda Johnston, a rancher from Melville, was re-elected as District 4 Director; Bill Rehbein, a rancher from Lambert was re-elected District 6 Director; Ed Bandel, a farmer from Floweree, was re-elected District 8 Director, and Sky Anderson, a rancher from Livingston, was re-elected District 10 Director.
Americans are facing a drought of rainy day funds to handle unexpected emergencies. Twenty-three percent of Americans have less than $100 in savings to cover an emergency expense if it happened today while forty-six percent report having less than $800, according to a new national survey conducted by online lender CashNetUSA.com. The findings reflect the growing percentage of individuals with varying socio-economic backgrounds living paycheck to paycheck.
The Big Sky Business Journal
P.O. Box 3262
Billings, MT 59103