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Medical company will bring new jobs

 (The Spokesman-Review)
(The Spokesman-Review)
Nils Rosdahl Correspondent

Wednesday’s groundbreaking for the North Idaho Rehabilitation Hospital is testimony of why the job market is busy and the housing market is so tight in Kootenai County. The 40-bed, 48,000-square-foot facility will employ up to 150 people when it opens early in 2006.

It’s not just another tourist service business. The average salary will be about $40,000, said spokeswoman Cheryl Gentile from Albuquerque-based parent company Ernest Health Inc.

Although the company is just 15 months old, it already has one hospital each in New Mexico, Colorado and Texas, and plans for more in the Southwest. It chooses areas with healthy economies and high percentages of retired people with few similar facilities nearby.

Located on six acres east of Wal-Mart in Post Falls, the $15 million hospital will attract customers who have completed their regular hospital care but need rehabilitative services to complete their recoveries. It will provide medical, physical, psychological and social services.

The company is closely aligned with the Salvation Army, for which its namesake, Ernest Toplis, was an officer. It was started by a group of rehab professionals with private equity financing. Check on the Internet.

Contractor to build on Harrison

Site preparations have begun for a 5,000-square-foot building to house Edwards Construction Co. in the southeast corner of Harrison Avenue at Government Way in Coeur d’Alene.

The single-story building should be completed in September, according to owner Jim Edwards. His company has been constructing high-end residences for 23 years. Project manager is Andy Smith.

Space in the building will be available for lease through Keith Hanlon of Coldwell Banker-Schneidmiller Realty.

Brat Boutique, Louie’s on Fourth

New and used children’s clothing, shoes and toys and maternity wear are featured at Brat Boutique, which opened this month at 503 N. Fourth St. (beside Franklin’s Hoagies).

Owner Kristine Kraus got into the business by buying, trading and selling baby items in the classified ads and on eBay. She came to Coeur d’Alene 15 years ago from Marysville, Wash. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays and 10 to 4 Saturdays. The grand opening will be Friday and Saturday. Phone 664-0817.

Next door, independent insurance agent Louie Quiring has opened Louie’s Insurance. The entire building previously was Dang Skateboard Shop.

Quiring offers auto, life, long-term care and medical supplement insurance. He has eight years’ experience and is certified. Originally from Chico, Calif., he is a graduate of Chico State University. He came to North Idaho in 1988 with Louisiana Pacific. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays. Phone 765-4568.

Child’s Imagination opening

Learning through play is the emphasis of A Child’s Imagination, a Coeur d’Alene child-care center that has an open house Saturday and will open for business Monday at 282 E. Kathleen Ave. (east of D & B Farm and Home).

Clients will be infants through age 5. Owners are Veronica and Lane Tuck, who moved last June to North Idaho from Santa Clarita, Calif. Hours are 6:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. weekdays. Phone 664-2921.

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