Companies wanting a northeastern US location will find that Wayne County offers comparatively lower start-up and operating costs and the benefits of a lower cost of living to employees. The overall tax climate in Pennsylvania is superior to neighboring states, and construction costs, operating costs, and labor costs are lower than other northeast locations. For relocating employees, cost of living indexes indicate that a lower wage does not necessarily translate into less disposable income. In fact, your dollar buys more lifestyle here.
Favorable Tax Climate – State & Local Tax Rates
An apples to apples comparison of taxes with other northeast states would be difficult because of the multiplicity of taxes at all levels of government. The Commonwealth fares considerably better than neighboring states like New York, New Jersey, Maryland, West Virginia, and Ohio.
Wage Rates Provide Major Cost Advantages
We compared wage rates within three northeast metro areas (New York, Trenton and Philadelphia) that essentially would compete with Wayne County for a business prospect. Annual wage rates across all occupations in Wayne County were 38% less than New York City, 35% less than Trenton, and 26% less than Philadelphia.
Cost of Living Advantages
Although wages are lower in northeast PA than surrounding metro areas, employers and employees relocating here will find that our lower cost of living could result in a positive net change in disposable income. Simply put, your dollar buys more lifestyle here.
Studies of northeastern Pennsylvania’s electronics industry and financial services support assertions that operating costs are lower in this area than competing locations. Below are findings from both studies.
Operating costs for light industrial and office operations in the region (Hazleton, Mount Pocono and Pittston were used as proxy locations) compared favorably against operating costs in three competitor locations (e.g., Lehigh Valley, PA; Bergen County, NJ,; and Suffolk County, NY). The three northeast PA communities offer lower cost environments relative to labor, real estate, and electric power when compared to Lehigh Valley, and dramatically lower relative operating costs compared to Bergen County and Suffolk County.
A study of financial service operations by Moran, Stahl & Boyer found that annual operating costs in northeast Pennsylvania are significantly lower than in Philadelphia, Hartford, and New York City. In order to compare relative costs for labor (including salary and benefits) and real estate, MS&B assumed a financial services operation had 500 employees and the total space requirement was 100,000 square feet. With these parameters, annual cost differences were projected as follows:
Northeast PA vs. Philadelphia: $3.2 million to $3.4 million
Northeast PA vs. Hartford: 3.7 million to $4.1 million
Northeast PA vs. New York City: 6.9 million to 8.4 million
Construction estimates by industry experts indicate that building in Northeastern PA compared to metro areas provides a significant cost savings.