The Sublette County Journal
Volume 5, Number 7 - 10/12/00
brought to you online by Pinedale Online
Pinedale Still 2nd Most Expensive Place to Live in Wyoming
High rents for houses and apartments in Pinedale have once again driven up the cost of living and made Sublette County's largest town the second most expensive place to live in the state according to a cost of living report for the second quarter, 2000, completed by the Wyoming Division of Economic Analysis.
During July 5, 6, and 7, 2000, researchers for the Division surveyed the prices of 140 separate items in Pinedale and twenty-six other towns and cities in Wyoming. The prices for the 140 items were aggregated into six categories, which were then weighted according to their overall importance in the consumer's budget. These categories and their respective weight categories include Housing (44.6%), Transportation (17.5%), Food (15.3%), Recreation and Personal Care (10.8%), Apparel (6.0%), and Medical (5.8%). The Housing category, due to its relative importance in the average consumer's budget, carries the largest weight factor and is the most influential category in the comparative index.
According to the report, Pinedale's Housing costs are 9% higher than the state average. in Wyoming only Jackson Hole (65%) and Gillette (11%) have higher housing costs in Wyoming than Pinedale.
Pinedale's Housing costs aren't alone in being higher than the state average. In fact, Pinedale's prices are higher in all but one of the six categories. Apparel prices in town are 21% higher than the state average, transportation prices (or gasoline) are 1% higher, Medical, 6% higher, and Recreation & Personal Care, 11% higher than the state average.
Justin Ballard, the economist with the State Division of Economic Analysis who completed the study, would not release the individual names of stores in Pinedale from which prices were attained. He was willing to release a list of the items which were priced, however. These 140 items were gleaned from the CPI or Consumer Price Index, says Mr. Ballard. The people who actually collected the price survey were contractors hired by the State.
The survey items which were priced included: a box of Corn Flakes; rent for a two bedroom, unfurnished apartment; an electric range; men's briefs; women's Wrangler jeans, an auto battery, a doctor's office visit, toothpaste, a 19" television, fifth of Seagram's 7, and package of Winston cigarettes.
Jackson and Pinedale were found to be the costliest places to live in Wyoming. Lusk and Newcastle, in the eastern side of the state, are the least expensive towns to live in Wyoming. <
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