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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Why Has Poverty Rate Gone Up in Upper Milford?

This was just a very small part of the discussion last night at Envision LV's final presentation last night, at NCC's Fowler Center, concerning its One Lehigh Valley Report.

According to the data, the poverty rate in Upper Milford has gone up by more than 5% over the past ten years. No other suburb in the Lehigh Valley has experienced that change. What makes Upper Milford so special?

According to Eric McAfee, the Director of Community Planning for the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission, it's because of the real estate crash. People unable to pay their mortgages moved out and people of more moderate means moved in. It is by no means a poverty community, just not as wealthy as it was before the real estate bubble collapsed.

Wouldn't this argument apply everywhere?

Any of you out there have any idea why Upper Milford is the sole LV suburb to experience this swing?


Anonymous said...

Upper Milford? Perhaps I'd have an opinion if I ever heard of it before or had any idea where it was.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Come on!!! I told the LVPC dude that my readers would have an explanation.

Pipeline Guy said...

Upper Milford has a good mix of housing types. Everything from trailers and townhouses to McMansions and custom rural homes, with many rundown 100 year old econoboxes thrown in.

My guess is that the residents in some of the less expensive/more rundown housing are having a rougher go of it. And/or seniors who have been in their homes for decades and are struggling to live off of social security. I don't think it has anything to do with laid off Air Products engineers eating ramen in a 3,500 sq. ft. house.

Anecdotally, the only two chronically unemployed people I know of live in Upper Milford. One has a few screws loose and the other drinks cheap beer all day, but despite not having two nickels to rub together they somehow survive in dumpy houses they bought for almost nothing in the 1980s.

Anonymous said...

The poverty rate went up because LCA forced everyone along the Limeport Pike to hook up to expensive non-gravity sewer hookups even if they had perfectly good septic systems. One farmer on 43 acres is being forced off his land because he can't pay for the new sewer and LCA sued him, of course.

Anonymous said...

Old people and poverty - Nobody ever moves out of Upper Milford and retirement for most is social security and maybe a small pension. I do not know what period of time they looked at but if it was from 1990 to 2000 or 2000 to 2010 - that is not the age of the wealthy boomer retiree territory yet. You are still looking at the blue collar retiree. Probably did not go to college and probably worked in a factory back when they paid you a wage you could raise a family on.

It would not take many retirees with modest means to move the needle. Other places in the burbs are younger. They have families and crawling with school kids.

Wind Gap is probably similar. Elderly pass away or the kids move mom or dad out to a nursing home somewhere else and put the house up for sale. The poverty goes down because the person in poverty is no longer there or replaced by somebody not in poverty.

Anonymous said...

Because people are poorer.

Anonymous said...

This is all just yet another angle that the LVRA has used as a excuse along with those incharge for the aqusition of developable parcels¿ Bernie I am very sure you were not the deed searcher in this situation and were not paid with grant monies for your studing of this anticipation¿

patent pending