Study: Danville least wealthy area in the country

Dollar-sign-with-ShadowA recent study of census figures shows that the Danville area, near the North Carolina border, is the least wealthy area in the country. The ravages of the poor economy for years have take their toll on this entire area.

This study by the Commonwealth shows many of the problems facing Danville. (These studies are available for any area or political subdivision) Companies going out of business, going elsewhere, including overseas. The unemployment problem is protracted and dangerous.

Researchers from the U.S. Census Bureau say barely more than one percent of people in Danville bring home an income of $191,500 or more. This number is based on the top five percent of household incomes from 2007-2011 and the number of homes in each county. It’s one of two metropolitan areas in the country with the least concentration of rich people.

Both are rural; Danville, Virginia, and ironically Danville, Illinois.

At the other end of the spectrum are the suburbs of New York City with nearly 18 percent of rich households, proving that more wealthy people live near high populated areas.

This is how communities die. As I have said before, we can’t afford to be excited about 43 or 152 jobs, although that would be great. We need a giant business, like the textiles used to be. One that will hire 450 people at a time. These communities need long term help, more than they are getting right now.


3 thoughts on “Study: Danville least wealthy area in the country

  1. “We need a giant business, like the textiles used to be. One that will hire 450 people at a time.”

    I don’t disagree, but what does that have to do with “barely more than one percent of people in Danville bring home an income of $191,500 or more”?

    Factory jobs are not going to be at the $191,500 level. But Harrisonburg actually has a higher poverty rate, 30.1% vs. Danville’s 26.6%.

    I never expected you to bemoan a lack of rich people.

    1. The lack of wealth in the community means several things. It means that very few “rich” people live there. It also means that businesses are not started or maintained, property taxes become delinquent. If you don’t believe me, Detroit is a great example. 50% of the landowners in Detroit do not pay property taxes.

      I am not complaining about the lack of rich *people*, I am complaining about the lack of wealth in some of our cities, which makes them more vulnerable to extreme debt, falling property values. Look at statistics for Martinsville/Danville are over the last ten years.

      Wealth in the community also is instrumental in charitable donations. Schools, symphonies, parks; all kept alive to some degree by charity. People volunteering is also charity.

      Look those stats up. Where the wealth is, should be productive thriving businesses of all sizes. After all, with no jobs, who’s going to buy pizza and snow tires?

      1. The study was actually about the lack of high-income people. Rich people create jobs, and people get rich by creating jobs. People invest their own money and time into creating product and services that people want at prices they are willing to pay, and they get rich doing so. Then they are demonized for being rich.

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