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Study ranks Carbondale last in discretionary income among small Illinois communities

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Study ranks Carbondale last in discretionary income among small Illinois communities

Daily Egyptian file photo

Daily Egyptian file photo

Daily Egyptian file photo

Daily Egyptian file photo

By Amelia Blakely

In a study released in October and conducted by Trove Technologies, a storage and moving company based in San Francisco, Carbondale ranked last among small metropolitan communities in Illinois for discretionary income.

The discretionary income study is the first of its kind because it uses data that displays regional differences in salaries, cost of living and taxes across a state, said Michael Pao, the company’s co-founder.

The data used is from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Tax Foundation and the Council For Community and Economic Research, Pao said.


The study looks at the take-home pay of American workers working across 778 professions, and Pao said the findings show the salaries in Carbondale trail Decatur by 13.8 percent.

Nationally, Carbondale ranks in the 48th percentile, according to the study.

Pao said Illinois ranks last among Midwest states in discretionary income, and Carbondale has some of the lowest salaries in the state.

“That’s reflected in some trends across the state where Illinois may or may not be losing some jobs, specifically manufacturing and production jobs to neighbors like Indiana and Kansas,” Pao said.

The study shows people living in Carbondale and working in industries like producing and directing, vocational counseling and manufacturing make less money than they would elsewhere. Those working in the education training and food preparation fields rank high in the study compared to other locations.

Pao said this isn’t surprising because education training and food preparation are usually the most popular industries in college towns.

Trove created this study to help its client base decide where to move, Pao said.

“They’re thinking about anything ranging from ‘I need to move my family’ to ‘I’m going to move across the country,’” Pao said.

States like Michigan, Indiana and Ohio, which have a higher-than-average pay rate for workers, are shown in the study to have a higher discretionary income, Pao said.

“Where you choose to live and where you choose to settle down depends on a lot more than just income, but it’s one of the many factors,” Pao said.

Staff writer Amelia Blakely can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @AmeilaBlakely.

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2 Responses to “Study ranks Carbondale last in discretionary income among small Illinois communities”

  1. Thomas Barrett on October 23rd, 2017 11:03 pm

    Thats the result of being a “Welcoming City” Illegals take low paying jobs and nobody makes any decent money for low income jobs. Nice job City Council and Mayor, sure your proud of this.

  2. Archie Bunker on October 26th, 2017 5:55 pm

    Ignorant, bigoted comment which illustrates a complete lack of knowledge about how discretionary income is measured. But please Trump jr. enlighten us on how being an unwelcoming city is a good thing, and how all of the small minded backwards closed communities in places like Hardin, Pope, and Franklin counties are overflowing with wealthy educated people. Lol.

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