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As reported yesterday, recent data shows De Witt County is more dependent on Social Security payments than is the rest of the country.

Research conducted by Dr. Roberto Gallardo a research associate with the Southern Rural Development Center at Mississippi State University, his research indicates in De Witt County, over 3,300 people receive some form of Social Security payment according to the Social Security Administration and the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Social Security beneficiaries represent 21 percent of the total county population. The Daily Yonder is an online publication covering rural America, and is published by the Center for Rural Strategies. Tim Marema, Associate Editor of the publication, explains research was done not to exploit these numbers but rather to inform people of a topic with a lot of attention, and in turn help people make better policies regarding Social Security.

[audio:socialsecurityresearch4.mp3]A Word From Marema[/audio]

A lot of the rural and small town reliance on Social Security benefits are due largely to the large urban centers, but a majority of the midwest is mostly rural areas. Marema points out, more urban areas tend to rely less on Social Security, while rural areas tend to rely more on it.

[audio:socialsecurityresearch5.mp3]A Word From Marema[/audio]

Marema points out, the reliance on Social Security in small towns and rural areas tend to be because of two things. First, the average age in rural areas tends to be higher. And second, the average income tends to be lower in rural areas than in urban areas.

[audio:socialsecurityresearch6.mp3]A Word From Marema[/audio]

Total Social Security payments in De Witt County amounted to $2,828 per person in 2009. The national average was $2,199 per person, and in Illinois it was $2,108.

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