Estimated Living Wage 2002 —2012, Maine Department of Labor in Maine

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Why This Indicator Matters

A basic needs approach identifies a market basket of budget items needed for a working family to maintain a reasonable standard of living. Most basic needs budgets include the same seven expense categories used by the U.S. Departments of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics: food, housing, transportation, health care, child care, clothing, and personal care. The livable wage calculation also includes an estimate of state and federal taxes.
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Definitions: The living wage is defined as the wage needed to cover basic family expenses (basic needs budget) plus all relevant taxes. To convert values from annual to hourly, a work-year of 2,080 hours (40 hours per week for 52 weeks) per adult is assumed.

The basic needs budget and living wage are calculated as follows: Basic needs budget = Food cost + child care cost + (insurance premiums + health care costs) + housing cost + transportation cost + other necessities cost

Living wage = Basic needs budget + (basic needs budget*tax rate)
The data shown is for a single adult with 2 children.

For more information, view MIT Living Wage Calculator created by Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dr. Amy Glasmeier

Data Source: Maine Department of Labor, Center for Workforce Research & Information