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Why Sammamish’s median household income is highest in U.S.

Sammamish River Trail. (King County Parks, Flickr)

It’s rare to find a study about incomes where Seattle doesn’t place at or near the top of the list, but a recent U.S. Census study shows that Sammamish’s median household income is the highest in the U.S.

The Eastside city just met the minimum population requirements to even make the list at 65,000, having grown past that figure last year. Sammamish clocked in at $183,000, highest among the 630 cities the census looked at, just above Bay Area cities like San Ramon and Palo Alto, reports The Seattle Times.

Live in Sammamish for the schools and then get out

Several Eastside cities found themselves high on the list, including Redmond at $134,844, Kirkland at $119,000, and Bellevue at $113,698, all of which exceeded San Francisco.

“We all talk about how expensive Seattle is; we’re pikers coming in at $93,000,” joked KIRO Radio’s Tom Tangney.

For co-host John Curley, a Sammamish resident, part of the reason Sammamish is high up relates to land and production.

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“They don’t have a whole lot of affordable housing there, so it keeps people out. So therefore you don’t have that number coming down,” he said. “I don’t know if they’ve excluded it. I just know that the price of having to develop in Sammamish is so unbelievably high with the highest impact fees in the United States.”

“Because we don’t have any other production. So what we do to produce for the government to have money is to whack developers with an impact fee, which then they turn around and whack the owner. So once we run out of land — which we sell to make money — I don’t know how they’re going to sustain the city. They’re going have to start to raise taxes.”

Listen to the Tom and Curley Show weekday mornings from 9 a.m. to noon on KIRO Radio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

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