Every week or so, in my Indiana bankruptcy blog, I try to include news about the job markets in our state. With bankruptcy law offices in 38 counties around Indiana, I am always alert for both good and bad news about employment opportunities. As I’ve often explained, people who’ve filed Chapter 7 bankruptcy need to keep their bills paid and begin to rebuild their lives, while those emerging from Chapter 13 bankruptcy need to keep up with their three-to-five year debt repayment plans supervised by the bankruptcy court. In either case, steady jobs with good pay are the key to my clients’ success in getting back on their financial feet. Small business owners can benefit from expansions by larger corporations to whom they supply goods and services, so employment news is important for small business bankruptcy clients as well.

In the past couple of weeks, I’ve reported troubling news about retailers, with many stores closing or rumored to close within coming months. I talked about Linens ‘N Things filing bankruptcy. The latest news is that Linens “N Things is scrapping its bankruptcy reorganization plan (which would have allowed the business to carry on under a court-directed plan) and will put itself up for sale in an auction. There is at least one unnamed bidder, and that bidder is proposing liquidating Linens ‘N Things entirely.

There was excellent news about the Rockies East Express East natural gas pipeline already beginning to create jobs in western Indiana (see Indiana Bankruptcy Attorney Glimpses Good News In The Indiana Jobs Pipeline). Also west of Indianapolis in Avon, CSX’s new railroad shipping route from California (bypassing Chicago) is likely to attract logistics investments and create a significant number of new jobs. Meanwhile, in Cambridge City on the east of Indianapolis, Really Cool Foods began work on its gigantic production and distribution facility, promising to employ 1000 or more Hoosiers.

With all the disappointing news about retailers, there’s actually very good news for the three big dollar store chains that operate in the Indianapolis area, and all three have been hiring. Dollar General’s building two new stores here, and the company will be remodeling many of its existing stores, 303 of which are in Indy. Family Dollar’s building a new store on Circle City’s south side, renovating its existing stores, and adding refrigerated foods. Dollar Tree, meanwhile, with 97 stores across Indiana, is in the process of announcing expansion plans, too. One retail broker commented that he sees dollar stores increasingly expanding into smaller towns. Needless to say, where there are stores, there are sales clerks, stockers, and other employees.

And, where there are glimmers of hope for new jobs, there are glimmers of post-holiday hope for post-bankruptcy filers as they emerge from the legal process of bankruptcy and begin rebuilding their financial lives.