A rebounding economy and growing consumer confidence may contribute to a successful holiday shopping season this year.
The consulting firm Accenture reported that this year 52 percent of consumers will increase their spending by $250 or more. On the whole, the report says people are expected to spend $582 for the holiday. 53 percent say they will brave the crowds on Black Friday.
"We actually started preparing right after the season ended last year,” said Scott Redman, store manager at Wal-Mart in the 8500 block of Jones-Maltsberger.
Black Friday is right after Thanksgiving - even starting Thursday night at some stores - and then soon after comes Cyber Monday, a multi-Billion dollar day of sales over the Internet; that one day is also a big opportunity for cyber thieves to take advantage of weak links in online security.
You may be focused on turkey and football games, but a quick lesson in cyber security will give you and the family something different to talk about over dinner other than politics.
Hundreds of veterans filled the Freeman Coliseum’s Expo Hall this week looking for work. The Texas Workforce Commission held a job fair specially tailored to those converting military experience into civilian jobs.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, veterans who have served since 9/11 are experiencing an unemployment rate of 10 percent, slightly higher than the civilian rate.
The Texas Workforce Commission is actively trying to get these veterans back into work.
During a recent tour of district 6, Councilman Ray Lopez stopped by several homes where volunteers were helping Rebuilding Together San Antonio, a local non-profit. Disabled and impoverished residents qualify for the work because they can’t do it themselves, and the organization attempts to work on 10 houses each year.
“I think we all recognize that there is a lot of work to be done in this community,” Lopez said to them.
San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro is not finished jet-setting following the elections. He will now head to Great Britain to talk to politicians, business leaders and top government officials in hopes of strengthening business relationships.
As an invited guest of the British government, Castro’s main mission is economic development.
City Council passed an ordinance in 2005 seeking to regulate sexually-oriented businesses, but an injunction fell into place that prevented the city from enforcing the new rules. The injunction was lifted in 2010, but sexually-oriented businesses have continued to operate with very few regulations being enforced.
District 6 Councilman Ray Lopez is looking to change all that with his ordinance that strengthens the language as to what constitutes a sexually-oriented business.
The new year is only two months away and the city’s economic development leaders are thinking about what challenges and opportunities await in 2013. This week, the city’s Economic Development Foundation presented an action plan to the council committee that looks closely at economic progress in San Antonio.
"We want to be successful,” said the foundation’s president, Mario Hernandez. “What better way to be successful than to establish high goals for economic development?” he asked.