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Business thriving after mandates lifted, some see staffing shortage

Parkway Lanes is seeing an increase in business since the mandate was lifted
Parkway Lanes is seeing an increase in business since the mandate was lifted(Jared Austin)
Updated: Jun. 1, 2021 at 9:29 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - For the third week in a row, Lancaster County will be staying in the green on the COVID-19 risk dial. This comes after a 90% drop in daily cases since January. New guidelines allow businesses to open up to 100% capacity.

Shift manager at Parkway Lanes Jonathan Mousel said, “With everything opening up, the business has picked up.”

Although lanes at Parkway Lanes have been open for months, workers are seeing it get busier since the health guidelines were dropped two weeks ago.

Mousel said, “We usually have every lane filled up so it’s pretty nice. it keeps us busy.”

The busiest time for Parkway Lanes is on Fridays and Saturday. Workers say people enjoy not having to mask or staying a lane apart from each other.

It’s a similar story in the restaurant industry. Restaurant officials are noticing more people, but it was long before two weeks ago.

Nebraska Restaurant Association executive director Zoe Olson said, “We’ve been dealing with this since at least march and it’s been nationwide.”

The business may be great in restaurants, but they’re still facing issues.

“We just don’t have enough people,” Olson said.

Short-handed restaurants are staying closed extra days because of staffing issues even with the Nebraska Department of Labor reporting Nebraska’s unemployment rate is at 2.8%.

Olson said, “What I hear from owners is business came back faster than our staffing did and then we’re competing with other industries for workers.”

Olson is hoping a national push for immigration reform can help by allowing an easier path to citizenship and more employment opportunities for people not from the U.S.

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