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Carowinds will pay seasonal fall works $20 per hour

The company says it wants to recruit a qualified workforce as some industries face a labor shortage

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — On Sept. 6, unemployment will no longer be boosted by extra $300 checks from the federal government. Some companies hope this will end a worker shortage, but others, like Carowinds, are adjusting to give employees what they want.

"I think employers found out that you know, we have to be aware of what the market rates are for jobs," said Dominic Macrone, Director of HR for Carowinds, "And in lot of cases, some employers were probably too low and had to adjust for that.”

During the height of the covid-19 recession, North Carolina lost close to 900,000 workers. North Carolina’s Department of Commerce says as of last month, only a fraction of those who lost work looked for another job.

At Carowinds, Macrone says 2,000 seasonal workers for the fall season will see an increase in pay.

“From the middle of September until the end of October, anybody working here will make at least $20 an hour," said Macrone.

Carowinds hosted a job fair on Saturday, and Macrone said the company has filled nearly every position.

Workers returning to the labor market said they prioritize flexibility, benefits, and higher pay.

“I know my worth. I know what I can do," said Sergio Armendariz, who attended the job fair, "Coming out the military, I still need to enjoy my life.” 

Macrone told WCNC that Carowinds isn’t waiting to see if workers will return after unemployment benefits are cut. Instead, it’s offering pay increases to ensure they do.

“We could not wait around. We wanted out great experience for our guests, and the way we get there is to be staffed with good associates and have our rides open," Macrone said.

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