As an economist who loves the West and our open spaces, I think a lot about what makes our small towns tick. To better understand how our economies work and how to strengthen them, we first have to ask where our money comes from. The answer — non-labor income — might surprise many readers.
You may be asking, “Non-labor what?” Non-labor income includes things like investment and retirement income, and medical or economic hardship payments. Headwaters Economics recently released an in-depth study of non-labor income across the West to better understand how it affects communities.