Thursday, September 18, 2014

Income stagnant in Illinois

The state’s median income has not increased since 2008, according to numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau.

The median household income for Illinois in 2013 was $56, 210—the same as it was in 2008, the year that the U.S. financial collapse began. Illinois’ median household income is slightly higher than the national of almost $52,000, which has stayed relatively flat over the same time period. Stateline, an initiative of the Pew Charitable Trusts, crunched the state numbers into this handy map for state comparisons. Meanwhile, the average income for the state's top 5 percent of earners is $363,159. That number has increased by 6.4 percent since 2008.

According to Pew's analysis, most of Illinois' neighboring states saw an increase in median income. The exceptions were Indiana, which had a .9 percent decrease, Wisconsin, which had a 1.2 percent decrease and Michigan, which had a .7 percent decrease. However, the average household income for the top five percent of earners went up in all three states. Out of Illinois' neighbors, Iowa saw the largest increase for overall income at 6.6 percent. The state also saw a 16 percent jump for the top 5 percent of earners.

The states that saw the most growth nationwide, North Dakota and Wyoming, are also experiencing a natural gas and oil boom. In North Dakota the median income increased by 20 percent to $55,759, and in Wyoming it went up by 10 percent to $58,752.

For more on earnings and the income gap in Illinois, see Illinois Issues June 2014.

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

State accepting patient applications for medical marijuana

The Illinois department of Public Health began accepting applications from patients and caregivers for the medical marijuana pilot program today.

The state will take applications from patients with last names beginning with the letters A through L. The application period for those with names starting with the letters M through Z is scheduled to begin on November 1.

Here are the links to IDPH's online application process and a Frequently Asked Questions pamphlet.