Monday, September 14, 2015

Living Wage Gaps By Counties

MIT’s Living Wage Calculator estimates the cost of living (“living wage”) in each of the nation's counties and major metropolitan areas, and compares it to the minimum wage for a variety of household types. Mapped here are three types: parent with spouse and two children, single parent with one child, and single adult.

Variations in the gap between living wage and minimum wage occur for a variety of reasons. A city with a relatively high minimum wage, for instance, may still show a large gap due to a high cost of living. Conversely, living expenses tend to be lower in rural areas, making even a relatively low minimum wage come closer to meeting basic household needs.

You can get Living Wage data for any county in the country from the link above. Below is the Herkimer County Data. Click to enlarge the table.


 The MIT site also has a living wage map which includes similar data but allows you to see the data spatially. Below is the Herkimer County data and map. Go to their Living Wage Map to see the country, as well as New York State counties.