Patti Eisenbraun had been anxiously waiting for the pandemic to subside so the dining room and patio at the Brown Iron Brewhouse would be bustling once again.
Yet the lights were off, and her business was closed here Monday — not for a lack of thirsty customers, but for a lack of employees.
“We went from 92 hours to 55 hours a week,” said Eisenbraun, who opened the brewery and restaurant in 2015 with her husband, after a decade of planning. “It’s a tough business model right now to be closed during those hours.”
A labor shortage is one of the persistent headwinds facing President Joe Biden as he builds support for his economic agenda to invest trillions of dollars in new federal spending to move the country from relief to recovery. From restaurants and retail to manufacturing and construction, signs declaring “Now Hiring” hang outside businesses most everywhere you look.