- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 8, 2015

ABERDEEN, S.D. (AP) - The northern South Dakota city of Aberdeen might look to western North Dakota to help address a workforce shortage.

Aberdeen Development Corp. wants to find out if there are people interested in moving out of North Dakota’s booming oil patch because of increases in traffic congestion, crime and the cost of living, said Kati Bachmayer, the group’s workforce development coordinator.

“We wouldn’t be targeting oil industry workers. Those are, for the most part, people who travel for that industry and who are there to make money,” she said. “We’d be reaching out to people who were residents since before the oil boom. We would maybe think about doing some newspaper advertising or something like that to reach out to that demographic.”

There are an estimated 1,000 unfilled jobs in Aberdeen, a city of about 27,300 people, according to the American News (http://bit.ly/1GKncIe ). Some of those jobs might be enticing to North Dakotans weary of the oil boom, Bachmayer said.

“It’s something that I’ve been reading about and something where it might make sense for some people,” she said.

A recruitment campaign is still just an idea at this point, Bachmayer said. Workers in other neighboring states also might be potential targets, she said.

“There are a lot of struggling local economies and high unemployment in the South, but what we’ve found is that we might be too cold here for a lot of those people,” Bachmayer said. “We’d like to focus on states closer to us like Minnesota and Iowa and others where people wouldn’t have to make a big adjustment to the weather.”

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Information from: Aberdeen American News, http://www.aberdeennews.com

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