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Economic Recovery Isn't Helping Typical NC Family

Families with incomes smack in the middle of the North Carolina economy are not benefiting from the state's slow recovery. That's according to data the Census Bureau released Thursday in its annual checkup on how American communities are doing.

Let's say there's a family in North Carolina whose annual household income is exactly in the middle of all households – there are an equal number that earn more and an equal number that earn less. We're going to call that family the Raleighs.

The Raleighs earned $45,150 last year, according to the new Census data. That figure – also called the median household income in our state – is basically no different from the year before.

And while the year was kind of meh for the Raleighs, the state economy grew close to 3 percent. Tazra Mitchell is an analyst for the N.C. Budget and Tax Center.

"Essentially what we're seeing is the economic growth bypassing the average North Carolinian in the state," said Tazra Mitchell, an analyst for the N.C. Budget and Tax Center.

She said the Census data shows the poorest North Carolinians are also getting left behind.

But back to the Raleighs: if we compare how they're doing now to how they did in 2000, it's looks even worse. Their income was about $5,000 higher back then. And based on other Census data that came out this week, that median North Carolinian household had one of its worst years last year as far as income goes since the mid '80s.