Bureau of Business Research


Date of this Version



Business in Nebraska vol. 55, no. 650


Copyright 2000 by Bureau of Business Research, University of Nebraska.


Welfare reform in the 19905 brought a renewed interest in the working poor, prompting analysts around the country to develop basic family budgets. Basic family budgets attempt to measure the amount of income families require to meet their basic needs without public assistance. It is generally accepted that the basic needs of a family include food, shelter, health care, transportation, childcare, and household and personal expenses (clothing, etc.). as well as a minimal amount of leisure activity.

This study estimates the level of income, or livable wage, required to cover the basic needs and taxes1 of individuals and families in Nebraska, independent of public income and housing assistance. In addition, the study examines whether full-time jobs in Nebraska pay livable wages.

Bridging the Gap


Basic Needs Estimates