The U.S. Census Bureau released its state-level 2015 poverty and income data Thursday, and the findings shouldn’t be too surprising to anyone living in the District: The nation’s capital has the highest median income in the country, but it also has a persistent poverty rate that hasn’t budged much.
The median household income in D.C. for 2015 was $75,628 — a 5.5 percent increase over the previous year and a figure that is well above the national median income of $56,500. Maryland — and the District, when compared to states — had the highest median incomes in the country. (Maryland and D.C.’s median incomes were statistically the same.)
D.C.’s poverty rate was 17.3 percent in 2015, a decrease from 17.7 percent in 2014. That’s well above the 13.5 percent national rate, but not an entirely apt comparison, considering D.C. is a city. In 2015, the poverty threshold for a family of four living in D.C. was $24,250.
When compared with other metro areas, the D.C. metro area had a lower poverty rate, at 8.3 percent, than any of the 25 most populous metro areas. The Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, Calif., region had the highest, at 17.5 percent.
The local data follow national trends, which saw an increase in incomes and a decrease in poverty. Nationally, cities saw a bigger increase in median income than rural areas. From 2014 to 2015, the poverty rate declined in 23 states and didn’t increase in any. Among the most populous 25 metro areas, the poverty rate declined in 16 and didn’t increase in any.
D.C. also saw a decline in the number of uninsured residents, with less than 8 percent of residents living without health insurance in 2015. On health care, states that expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act continued to see a decline in their uninsured rated, widening a coverage gap with those states that did not expand the program.
This post will be updated.