Missoula County



Breast & Cervical Cancer

Rental Housing

Violent Crime


Basic Needs

Physical Activity



Mental Health

Childhood Immunizations

Heart Disease

Health Care Coverage

Feeling Well

Traffic Crashes

Communicable Diseases

Why This Measure? 

The income self-sufficiency of our citizens is a key measure of their well-being. Income self-sufficiency means earning the money a household requires for basic needs without any public or private assistance. Before determining what proportion of the region’s households are self-sufficient, the income requirements for self-sufficiency should be estimated. These estimates are presented in the following two graphs. (This is a draft for further comment.)

 Self-sufficiency measures were estimated for the following household types: single adult; parent and infant; parent, infant, and preschool age child; two parents, infant, and preschool age child.


Basic household needs examined here include housing, child care, food, transportation, medical care, and taxes. All other expenses, like clothing and cleaning supplies, were assumed to be 16 percent of the total. Expenses were estimated using federal, state, and local government data sources. Earned Income Tax Credit and child care tax credits are subtracted from these estimates where applicable.

The first table on the following page lists the assumptions underpinning these measures by expense category. Data sources are also listed. The second table lists the detailed monthly expenses used to estimate the measures for each household type. The information presented in this working paper was assembled and analyzed by Andrea Smith, a graduate student in Public Administration at the University of Montana - Missoula.

Sources and Assumptions Table

Expense Source Assumptions
Transportation Missoula County 1996 Transportation Plan Update
  • Daily Vehicle Miles Traveled Per Capita = 15.9
  • 1 driver per household, + 50% for each child (2 parent household assumes each parent drives 15.9 miles per day)
  • Cost per mile = $0.31 (federal reimbursement rate)
Child care Childcare Resources, Missoula
  • Daily cost = $14.00 to $21.00 per infant
  • Monthly figure = 75th percentile of cost range
  • Preschooler cost 9% less
  • After school and summer care cost = 50% full-time cost averaged over 12 months
Housing U.S. Dept. Housing and Urban Development Missoula County Fair Market Rent Costs at 45th percentile, including basic utilities (Montana Power) and local phone (US West).
Food U.S. Dept. Of Agriculture Low Cost Food Plan Does not include fast food or restaurant meals.
Medical Montana Dept. Public Health and Human Services Employees share of insurance premium for non-working dependents and out-of-pocket costs for over the counter medications, etc.


Detailed Expenses



Monthly Expense

Single Adult




Two parents/ Infant/







Child care
















Medical Care















Total Monthly Income





Wages Per Hour






Home | Domestic Violence | Health

Copyright 1999-2018 Missoula County