Biz briefs

Posted: Tuesday, June 20, 2000

Sears dealer being sought

Bill Kent, regional market development manager for Sears Retail Dealer Stores, was in Juneau on Monday and today laying the foundation for a dealer store that could be open in the fall.

Interviews with dealer candidates will be held in Juneau by mid-July at the latest, Kent said. Following a background check for motor vehicle violations, criminal record and financial information, Sears should be ready to send a letter of intent to the selected candidate by early August, he said.

No site for the dealer store has been selected, although Sears will assist the successful candidate in finding suitable retail space, Kent said. ``We will hold his hand. We will be his mother for the entire exercise.''

Kent had a meeting scheduled this morning with City Manager Dave Palmer and other municipal officials. ``We just want to make sure they're aware of what's happening in their community.''

Antiques appraised by experts

Mendenhall Center, formerly the Mendenhall Mall, is bringing in four professional appraisers this weekend to evaluate antiques and collectibles.

The appraisers are Lady Jane Mulready and Leah Strauss of Juneau and two others from Oregon, said Lisa Peterson, marketing and promotions manager for the shopping center.

Revenue from appraisals -- $10 for the first item, $5 for additional items -- will be used to reimburse travel expenses, Peterson said.

She said she expects to see comic books, silverware and furniture being appraised. For particularly heavy items that would be difficult to transport, Peterson said she will take digital photos for the appraisals. She can be reached at 789-0090.

Unemployment stays low

Alaska's unemployment rate dropped to 6.1 percent in May, down from 6.6 percent, making for the second-lowest rate for the month in 20 years.

In May 1999, unemployment was 6.7 percent.

In Juneau, unemployment for May was 4.2 percent, down from 4.5 percent in April. But double-digit unemployment persisted in the Prince of Wales/Outer Ketchikan census area, where 12.2 percent of the work force didn't have jobs.

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