MIT Living Wage Calculator Shows Gap In Northwoods

Oct 29, 2015


Massachusetts Institute of Technology has a program which determines what it costs for people to live in every county in the country.

A UW-Extension spokesperson says the numbers show people here have a tough time keeping up.

The calculator found in Oneida county one adult needs to make a little more than $10 per hour to get by. An adult with one child needs nearly $22 per hour. "Getting by" is defined as food, housing, childcare, transportation and taxes. Oneida County UW-Extension Family Living Educator Sara Richie says childcare is in short supply here. She says a family of four with two adults working and two children, the costs would be about $16,000 a year....

"....for a parent in that type of a family structure and you need childcare for the little ones you each need to be making about $15.79 an hour..."

Richie says the costs don't match up with the wages...

"....for a single parent to be making ends meet, you need to be making around $30 an hour if you have two children and that's not very realistic with the type of jobs we do have....."

The study also said a poverty wage with one adult and three children is $11.00 per hour. The numbers are comparable in Vilas, Forest, Lincoln and Langlade counties. The calculator can be found at