Where does Spokane area personal income come from?
October 19, 2011 Leave a comment
Indicators Northwest. Great web site for data.
22% of Spokane area personal income is transfer payments, as noted on this web site before. These charts help to see the differences between Spokane a few other counties in Washington. Transfer payments represent a significantly larger part of Spokane area incomes than in other large counties with transfer payments running 50% to 100% higher in Spokane. The growth rate in Spokane has also been very rapid.
Transfer payments are payments made without any contemporary service or product provided. For example, pensions, unemployment, disability and other benefits programs, primarily funded by taxpayers.
No information is provided here on how the transfer payments are allocated between pensions, disability, unemployment and so on. A guess is that Spokane has become a retirement center, where wage income is a diminishing portion of local income.
Of interest, a typical government employee, at retirement, receives a pension that is roughly equivalent to an annuity having $1 to $2 million value, depending on their wages while working. Stated another way, a private sector worker would have to save $1 to $2 million of their own money, by the start of their retirement.