Welcome to the new normal, Nevada

The Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation sent out an email press release Friday morning reporting that the state unemployment rate for April stood at nearly 30 percent, the highest ever recorded and double the national rate.

The unemployment rate in Nevada was 28.2 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis and 29.8 percent on an unadjusted basis, compared to the national rate of 14.7 percent adjusted and 14.5 percent unadjusted.

Gov. Steve Sisolak, whose panicked order to shutdown most of the businesses in the state in overreaction to the little understood coronavirus, was quoted as saying, “Nevada is facing record high unemployment and the sheer numbers are difficult to comprehend. I am so pleased that DETR staff is working so hard to connect Nevadans to their benefits during this time, paying out more than 80 percent of eligible claims week over week. Nevada is working diligently to get people back to work as fast as possible, in a safe and responsible manner.” (Pay no heed to the fact the website that was supposed to allow unemployed gig workers to file was still down early today.)

David Schmidt, chief economist for DETR, pointed out that over the past year private sector employment in Nevada saw a 20 percent drop, while public sector employment fell only 3.2 percent. An attachment showed that the annual drop from April to April for the leisure and hospitality sector, which included shuttered hotels and casinos, fell 39.3 percent.

With slow phased openings being allowed and contemplated by Sisolak, don’t expect many of those jobs to ever return. Many businesses are closing permanently as owners go broke. Others that are reopening at half capacity or less and need only half as many workers, except for those doing the disinfecting of every touchable surface.

As jobless benefits expire and the jobs fail to return, expect many to drop out of the labor force entirely. That will statistically cut the jobless rate. Others can be expected to leave the state in search of jobs elsewhere.

A jobless rate of less than 10 percent in the coming two years may not be likely.

While the shutdown was an effort to flatten the curve of COVID-19 hospitalizations to avoid a crisis, in Nevada the curve was flat, according to records obtained by the morning paper. And according to DETR, health care jobs were lost, too. Health Care and Social Assistance jobs fell 11 percent year over year and Ambulatory Health Care Services jobs fell 17.7 percent. Hospital jobs were unchanged in April, but there have been reports that hospitals have laid off staff due to the ban on elective surgery.

Was this trip really necessary?



49 comments on “Welcome to the new normal, Nevada

  1. Bruce Feher says:

    My wife worked for DETR for 10 years, she worked in similar positions in Florida. She was highly rated and even received a certified of appreciation hand signed by Governor Sisolak when, the incompetent managers conspired to get rid of her for pointing out violations of policy!
    They don’t like to be proved wrong so, they violated policy again, fabricated “evidence and the lawsuit is in the works!
    DETR is run by hacks and nothing proves this more than the mess that have created today!

  2. Mistrbill says:

    We have lived in Nevada 55+years and never in our wildest dreams could fathom what Sisolack has done to our home! He must go and I mean now. He has shown that he is a Communist in every thought and action he has taken and blocked we citizens of Nevada’s Constitutional rights, both State and Federally.
    I felt his power hunger at many City board meetings but as governor, it is 100% worse! Please, Nevadan’s get him out of there!

  3. The gig worker website was working before noon.

  4. Bruce Feher says:

    The site may be up but I expect there will be all sorts of bureaucratic obstacles to overcome before a lot of people get benefits! After all, it’s DETR and making things difficult for filers is in their DNA.

  5. You mean the check is not in the mail?

  6. Bruce Feher says:

    Roger that! We are attempting to jump through the hoops on the gig site and will advise.

  7. Bruce Feher says:

    I’m “entitled” to 12 weeks back payments. I have to fill out a form for each one of those 12 weeks which then have to be “reviewed” causing further delay!
    The excuse will be that they, DETR, don’t want those not eligible to get any money.
    I say, make payments now so those in need and, there are thousands of them, have cash to buy food and pay for other essentials!
    Then go after those that weren’t supposed to get benefits and apply whatever penalties there are if the money is not paid back!

  8. Athos says:

    You want a Herculean job? What is the breakdown by age of Kung Flu deaths in Nevada? Wanna bet more than half of the deaths were people over the age of 70? Why won’t our benevolent leaders put out these numbers? Over the last 10 weeks were our hospitals ever at 50% capacity or more?

    How many deaths under the age of 20? What were the ages (and numbers) of ICU patients? Why did we allow our world to be ripped asunder?

  9. Athos says:

    And don’t try calling DETR. You can start at 8am and get a busy signal till 9:15am (both Las Vegas and Reno numbers) at which time you’ll be told the lines are full try again tomorrow. Now tell me who is going to wait on hold to DETR from 9am till 8pm to talk to a human being??

    In case you couldn’t tell, I think Sissyluck is a moron and anyone that votes D is asking for gross incompetence AND a Nanny State! Bad combo, people.

  10. Half? According to CDC more than 80 percent of COVID-19 deaths have been over 65.

  11. Anonymous says:

    I love this stat and I sure hope republicans repeat it all the way till the election because this is what senior citizens hear:

    “Trump and the republicans say that if we die it doesn’t matter cause we’re old”

    It’s beautiful and explains why it is that Trump keeps losing more and more senior votes.

  12. The shutdown was never intended nor expected to prevent one single COVID-19 infection. It was merely a delaying tactic. The only deaths it was expected to prevent were those due to overwhelmed hospitals, which never occurred. In fact hospitals are in financial trouble and laying off staff due to too few patients.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Thomas that’s all interesting and obviously that is your opinion but I don’t share it and the facts sure argue against it. But for the shutdown what would the hospitals have looked like do you think?

    But my point was more about the perceptions among seniors of what the administration and republicans are saying about them and their deaths.

    It’s not good and they’re running away from republicans and to democrats as fast as they’re little old legs can carry them as evidenced by the latest Fox News poll showing trump losing seniors by more than 17 points.

    So I say keep up the good work!

  14. I don’t us geezers are that stupid.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Speak up sonny.

  16. Athos says:

    All Right! Annie has spoken! The new CDC numbers are out, fellas. Seems like IF you’re under the age of 60, and otherwise in good health, you are almost as likely to die by a bolt of lightning than Kung Fu Flu.

    HOWEVER, thanks to the guardians of our Main Stream Media, people are consumed by fear.

    I also blame our idiot Governor (at least we have a Mayor with common sense and cojones) for not implementing a real plan now that the numbers are in.

    Open up, quarantine the most vulnerable and get everyone else back to work. And above all, clearly share the REAL numbers with the populace. Truth will cast out fear, Governor.


  17. Rincon says:

    “Nevada did not previously restrict elective procedures; however, individual communities had restricted them.” https://www.mcguirewoods.com/client-resources/Alerts/2020/5/state-governors-stay-at-home-prohibition-elective-procedures-orders

    It appears that the reason hospitals are half empty is because of the virus itself. Hospitals apparently decided to restrict elective procedures themselves. The governor did not.

    Anon suggested that the lockdown may have been effective, preventing hospitals from filling up. The numbers suggest that he is correct. New York City reports about 16410 deaths out of a population of 8.4 million. This gives us a death rate of about 1%. About 20% of New Yorkers have been exposed, according to random antibody testing. Nevada has only 392 deaths out of a population of 3 million, a death rate of only 1 in 10,000, or .001%. Unless Nevadans are a lot tougher than New Yorkers, the death totals suggest that the infection rate in Nevada is somewhere in the vicinity of 1%. How many of you know someone that has had the virus?

  18. Athos says:

    I know of no one that has died from the virus. I do know one person that died from suicide. Our Rulers have the numbers. They need to stop bashing Trump and do this in two easy steps:

    1) tell the public the true numbers (after 1st getting the true numbers) broken down by age and prior health. How many were hospitalized, placed in ICU, or spent 2 weeks taking Tylenol.

    2) Open businesses and let the people decide FOR THEMSELVES what level of risk they want. Our Casinos are surprised at the number of room reservations we are taking AS SOON AS WE’RE OPEN.

    And for heaven’s sake, take care of the seniors in nursing homes! NY, NJ, Ill, Cali, and Minn Governors should be prosecuted for the Senior Center Deaths. THEY sent covid patients OUT OF THE HOSPITALS and BACK TO THE CENTERS.

    And when it comes to churches opening, AT LEAST THE LIBERALS HAVE FINALLY FOUND THE 10TH AMMENDMENT! Now if they would ONLY read the 1st!

  19. Steve says:

    “So I know there is a sort of libertarian argument for the release of lockdown, and I think it is unfortunate that those of us who feel we should think differently about lockdown have had our voices added to that libertarian harangue. But the truth is that lockdown is a luxury, and it’s a luxury that the middle classes are enjoying and higher income countries are enjoying at the expense of the poor, the vulnerable and less developed countries. It’s a very serious crisis.”



  20. Rincon says:

    I mostly agree. That being said, I believe that requiring masks and proper physical distancing is not too much to ask, at least in areas with substantial numbers. As for those who want the freedom to do whatever they please, I’m sure many drunk drivers would like the same. In both cases, the problem is that their behavior puts themselves and others at risk. Absolute freedom is not feasible if it harms other people. That goes the other way too. Kicking someone out of their job certainly harms them. People who want to dictate radical terms on both sides are in the wrong.

  21. Steve says:

    “areas with substantial numbers” are the super spreaders.

    “Ignoring the terrible outbreaks in nursing homes, we find that the biggest outbreaks are in prisons, religious ceremonies, and workplaces, such as meat packing facilities and call centers. Any environment that is enclosed, with poor air circulation and high density of people, spells trouble.”


    Reality is proper hygiene and avoiding long exposures in crowded environments are far more effective than stifling yer face holes.

  22. Anonymous says:

    It’s funny how, on a day this country set out to honor men and women who died sacrificing their lives for this country that so many right wingers dishonor their names and all they fought and died for.

    More than a few of the soldiers this country honored yesterday died in battles fought during WWII. During that war, even those that stayed behind sacrificed things that many of would call “rights” today including the right to free speech, the right to assemble and others. The people did this because they understood that defeating the enemy required everyone to sacrifice for the greater good even if it meant that the “rights” individuals wanted and even expected had to be sublimated for some time.

    As just one example, on both coasts citizens were told that they could not, after certain hours, have lights visible outside their homes or businesses lest they become targets of enemy bombing attacks. Most people understood and if they didn’t, their neighbors and yes even the law was there to make sure they understood. Now my memory is not so good anymore but I believe the numbers of Americans killed in enemy bombing raids were…nearly non-existent. Nevertheless it was considered a patriotic duty to comply with those rules which worked to the benefit of everyone.

    Like those days, we have been told by the people currently in charge in this country that we are facing “an invisible enemy”. One that has killed more Americans to date than the com ones number of Americans that died in the 911 attacks, the Vietnam War, and the Korean War.

    How it is that on Memorial Day, this day we set out to honor those who gave their lives for others in this country, we have to listen to folks on the right wail and gnash their tooth about how THEIR RIGHTS to get a haircut at SuperCuts so outweighs other Americans rights to be free from the plague that our “leader” has called the “invisible enemy” that we are fighting a WAR against?

    What sort of fake “patriots” are these people?

    Never mind, I know.

  23. Steve says:

    In Patrick’s case, I find I need to amend my statement.
    Stifling the face holes might be a good thing.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Imagine during the war, tens of thousands dying (fewer than have died so far in this war against our “invisible enemy”) some lunatic telling the rest of us that no, they’re not dimming their lights in their house at night because…freedom etc.? Or that they aren’t willing to sacrifice their “liberty” to have their lights on so they can play a little game of Mononopy that night and that if YOU want to shut yourself up in your house and shut your lights off so be it, that’s up to you but THEY will do what they see fit cause…Liberty etc.

    How long do you figure it might have been until those folks would have received a visit from the authorities (if they were lucky)?

    These right wing lunatics man.

  25. Anonymous says:

    Oh how times have changed.

    “Windows were broken at the Fahey-Brockman clothes store at 1531 4th Avenue to get at illuminated display lights, which were then knocked out. Rioters became more excited as they searched for additional lights. A leader emerged when Ethel Chelsvig (1922-?), the wife of Seaman Raymond Chelsvig (1909-1967), a boiler technician on the destroyer USS Kane, urged the crowd on. She loudly proclaimed that she was married to a Navy man and that he was out there fighting. Chelsvig asked the crowd if they were “going to stand by while these lights threaten the very life of our city?” and shouted “Break them! Turn them out” (“Glass-smashing Mob …”). One young man climbed the Weisfield and Goldberg Jewelers electric street clock and destroyed the neon tubes around it. The police tried to arrest the offender, but the crowd shielded him and he was able to escape.”

    Imagine this? A community riled to action, even though not a single person had died, angry that a few selfish individuals were thinking only about themselves.

    Now what do we have? Radical far right lunatics storming capitols with guns, spitting their anger out that “their rights” to go get their haircut has been restricted ted, for LESS THAN 2 months. With the end result being that all of us are endangered. And, so far, in less than 3 months, 100,000 Americans have died.

    Shameful. Fricken ingrates

  26. Rincon says:

    A very informative article, Steve, and your thought about avoiding areas with high densities of people and poor air circulation is well taken. Makes concerts sound kind of unlikely for awhile, at least indoors. Am I correct though, that there was no assessment given on the efficacy of face masks?

  27. Steve says:

    The message is where appropriate.
    Alone, walking the dog, driving your car, jogging, bicycling, even retailers and cruise ships are not high risk. Face covers are practically useless while in these places or doing those things. The exception is employees because they are in the same place for that extended period of time making the potential for a viral load much higher.
    In restaurants, sitting out of the way from HVAC vents makes sense normally as it’s always too hot or too cold under those anyway.
    In all these instances, nose breathing is best of all.
    Places where people congregate are high risk. Live events indoors or out, of any kind are where spread is found. Large groups of people even outdoors is ill advised for the nonce. All covers do is stop the large droplets from getting past, since they do nothing to stop the virus itself, nose breathing remains the best. Large droplets don’t get inhaled with the light intake through the nose.

    For people to be shaming anyone just for sticking their nose out the front door of their own house is just ignorant and our politicians are loving it, egging those people on while stopping just shy of making it mandatory everywhere.
    Joe Biden and his wife all masked up to the hilt, outdoors nearly alone, at the least totally distanced from anyone else in the area is just atrocious imagery to anyone who understands and takes the advice of experts who are not being pushed by politics, from either direction. I say this because Trump looks just as silly using the same podium and mic as all the others with their faces covered except when at that same mic. Both of these are only playing to their base, I maintain only Trump actually believes most of what he says while Biden is practicing political messaging. (curly shuffle)

    Every time I tell people “where appropriate” I get attacked from the right for being a sheep and the left for hating everyone for my nose breathing.

    More to the point, for 2 years my wife has been O2 dependent and I think the COPD started almost a decade ago. Two years ago I brought home a cold. She suffered for more than a month. I was done with it in three days. Over time I learned how to avoid germs without going all Howie Mandel. We haven’t had so much as a sniffle since. (sans allergies) We went out to eat, shop and movies. When this started in March we were at a Trader Joe’s. A gloved up mask wearing idiot saw the cannula in my wife’s nose and near freaked, turned and almost ran away from her. Since that incident, I don’t take my wife shopping.
    This lockdown took the rest away from her, which hurt her because those were the only way she got exercise, the COPD precludes walking much at all. Outside large groups, basic hygiene and avoid touching the face is all anyone really needs. These professionals actually showed me I was doing the right things all along.

    At the end he does indicate wearing masks to reduce what we expel into the environment as useful. Coupled with all the risk identifiers, appropriate places for use are easy to identify. Par for the course, reality is well away from either extreme and politicians are lying to us.

  28. Athos says:

    “…Americans rights to be free from the plague…” What a lovely thought, Annie! It’s fiction, of course, because no such “right” exists, does it? I believe in Utopia, but it will come in the next life (cause I’m a Christian, and that’s how we roll) not in this one. No matter WHO is in charge.
    Annie, is it a ‘RIGHT’ to eat all the chocolate I want and not gain weight? If not, it SHOULD BE, huh?

    Sleepy Joe and his wife wearing those ridiculous cloth masks OUTDOORS is the perfect example of the Democrat Party, useless except as a prop to VIRTUE SIGNAL how much they care (and how meaningless and empty it is).

    We’re going to open up a few casinos next week, and that should be interesting, shouldn’t it?

  29. Steve says:

    First time in 124 years the Boston Marathon is canceled.

    124 years.

    This means it was not canceled for the 1917 Spanish Flu pandemic.

    This tells me the fearmongers are winning.

  30. Rincon says:

    I mostly agree with you, Steve, and applaud the careful research you have done in order to make things safer for your wife. It is true that face masks are unnecessary in many situations when distancing is adequate and an awful lot of people wear them unnecessarily, but that’s less harmful than the ones who refuse to wear them when appropriate. Nevertheless, I suspect you would agree that face masks are entirely appropriate when good distancing is not feasible, i.e., when New Yorkers living in a 35th floor apartment must use either an elevator or the stairs to get to the street, risking a great deal of close contact with others.

  31. Rincon says:

    Oh, I forgot the Marathon. Seems to me that 35,000 people breathing very forcefully for more than two hours in very crowed conditions is a pretty risky situation – certainly as risky as the people in the Chinese restaurant cited in your paper. You may also be forgetting that Massachusetts has a very high rate of COVID 19. Risk could perhaps be mitigated by staggered starting, but even staggering over 17 hours would result in one runner starting every 2 seconds – still pretty crowded, especially in the clumps that would form and in passing situations. And that’s assuming no dense crowd of onlookers.

    Using the procedures used during the Spanish Flu as a standard of good policy is doubtful at best, since it resulted in more than 50 million deaths worldwide. Perhaps the cavalier attitude demonstrated by those running the Marathon back then was part of the problem, rather than the best answer, as you seem to assume.

  32. Steve says:

    Marathon starts have been staggered for a few decades now.
    Any close crowding spreads out fast. Turns into a bunch of joggers spread out over miles.

    Masks were a procedure used in 1917.

  33. Steve says:

    Maybe this snapshot will work.

  34. Steve says:

    “We know that wearing a mask outside health care facilities offers little, if any, protection from infection. Public health authorities define a significant exposure to Covid-19 as face-to-face contact within 6 feet with a patient with symptomatic Covid-19 that is sustained for at least a few minutes (and some say more than 10 minutes or even 30 minutes). The chance of catching Covid-19 from a passing interaction in a public space is therefore minimal. In many cases, the desire for widespread masking is a reflexive reaction to anxiety over the pandemic.”

    OK here’s a copy, this is the relevant portion of the article for the rest of us.

    Again, it’s the lead from the the linked article in that total hack source gotta be a total lie, New England Journal Of Medicine.

  35. Rincon says:

    Your source is generally a very good one, but I still respectfully disagree with the article for two reasons: 1) I don’t know in what section this was published, but articles without footnotes are generally not respected in the scientific community. The author failed to provide the source of his assertions. 2) The article contradicts itself: “Masking all providers might limit transmission from these sources by stopping asymptomatic and minimally symptomatic health care workers from spreading virus-laden oral and nasal droplets…” So the author says masks are no help in the general public, but may limit transmission if the wearer is a health care provider. Must be an amazing technology that can create masks that work or not depending on the occupation of the wearer rather than their disease status.

    I also consider the Centers for Disease Control to be a reliable source, but they disagree with the NEJM article: “In light of this new evidence, CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain” https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/cloth-face-cover.html

  36. Steve says:

    In other words exactly what the NEJM article says.
    Where appropriate.
    Not while driving, not while walking the dog, not while jogging (marathon), not when outdoors where spreading out is always totally doable in just about every situation.
    And 50% capacity requirements preclude indoor crowding, so not worth anything inside either.

    And that article was about professionals using medical grade masks, not cloth screens in hopes of making people feel like they are doing something, anything. As long as it gives them good “feelings” about their “love” for others.
    Total BS. Covid germs don’t fly for miles or for long periods of time.

    Wash yer hands, don’t touch yer face unless using a kleenex or yer hands are clean, stay away from crowds, stay home if yer sick and remain calm.

  37. Rincon says:

    Although we mostly agree, I do have a small technical correction: “The tests show that when the virus is carried by the droplets released when someone coughs or sneezes, it remains viable, or able to still infect people, in aerosols for at least three hours.”


  38. Steve says:

    Those datasets were studied under laboratory conditions. Real life is very different, as usual.
    Viral load is a real thing. See Erin Bromage link for reality vs that lab data.

    Yes it is possible to get transfer from a surface to a spot on your skin that could get to your nose, mouth or eyes….that requires touching a spot with active virus, then touching your nose, mouth or eyes. Very low risk. Very low. But public restrooms could be more of a source…except those are currently under heavy cleaning protocols. So wash yer hands….as if you wouldn’t have anyway. Only this time, grab a fresh paper towel and use it to open the door.

    As for hanging in the air, again see Erin Bromage link. Viral load takes time and concentration, indoors.
    Outdoors, this is a near zero probability.

  39. Steve says:

    I don’t hang out in restrooms for hours at a time…hopefully no one does.

    That would be really creepy.

  40. Rincon says:

    You are making sweeping assumptions based on very limited data. While I generally agree, this is
    from your article:
    “Infection could occur, through 1000 infectious viral particles you receive in one breath or from one eye-rub, or 100 viral particles inhaled with each breath over 10 breaths… ”

    “A single sneeze releases about 30,000 droplets, with droplets traveling at up to 200 miles per hour. Most droplets are small and travel great distances (easily across a room).”

    So according to the example assumptions of your own article, one has only to inhale only 1/30th of a sneeze, which can quickly cross a room, to acquire the disease. Seems to me that this could easily occur just standing in an elevator or sitting on a crowded bus when someone sneezes (or coughs) behind you – or if the guy in front of you coughs a few times while you’re sucking in great lungfuls of air while running a marathon. If you don’t think this can occur outdoors, consider how many times you’ve received a blast of cigarette smoke from someone 8 feet away outdoors, upwind of you. Coughs and sneezes travel just as easily.

    BTW, it is well documented that the immune system takes a severe dive during and after running a marathon. An infectious dose for a participant may well be far less than that for most others. As you said, the real world is often different from an ivory tower study. Beware of overinterpretation.

    That being said, I agree that paranoia is not warranted here. Minimizing risk by distancing to a reasonable extent and wearing a mask when likely to help is reasonable. Hibernating for a year or would do more harm than good for most of us.

  41. Rincon says:

    Did I say 1/30th of a sneeze? Silly me. Again, from your article: “If a person is infected, the droplets in a single cough or sneeze may contain as many as 200,000,000 (two hundred million) virus particles which can all be dispersed into the environment around them.” Sounds like 1/200,000th of a sneeze is sufficient under some circumstances.

  42. Steve says:

    Marathons very quickly spread out far larger distances than 8 feet between runners and all of them who are more jogging then running.

    Canceling the Boston Marathon was wrong.

  43. Rincon says:

    Thinking that 37,000 runners will all be 8 feet apart is daft unless the staggered start is greatly lengthened, and thinking that even 8 feet is very safe is highly questionable when the runners all face a relative head wind, . You’ve obviously never driven behind a smelly bus. They’re 30-70 ahead of you and somehow, your car fills up with exhaust if there’s no cross wind. It doesn’t seem to occur to you that the same can happen with viral particles a mere few feet away.

    It also presents the same problem that led the NBA to cancel its season well before our President even caught on that there was a problem. It’s a private organization, and like the NBA, decided the possible negative publicity and liability wasn’t worth the risk. Besides, it wouldn’t have been much of an event if most of the runners didn’t show up. The front runners in particular are unlikely to race because there’s a distinct possibility that even a fairly minor infection might cause small scale permanent lung damage, a career ending possibility. Let me see, whose judgement would I trust, the sophisticated business people who decided to play it safe, even though it meant a great loss of revenue, or an armchair COVID19 expert?

  44. Rincon says:

    One more silly question. Where do you put 37,000 runners who are waiting to start the race and still keep them 6 feet apart?

  45. Steve says:

    They ran in 1918.
    Mask insistence is based on 1918.
    1918 is the precedent.
    Canceling the marathon was wrong.

  46. Protesters are not social distancing …

  47. Steve says:

    They have been staggering the marathon for decades.

    Oh well, murderous cops are doing everything they can to ensure the virus goes nuts on the country in the second half of the year.

    All hail herd immunity.

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