Why Is There Such A Huge Wage Difference Across States For The Same Type Of Jobs?

The difference in wages for the same jobs across different American states is crazy. Take for example different Police Officers across states. The starting wage of a Police Officer in Jackson, MS is $23,000 a year, rising to about $25,000 after a few years service. While, on the other hand, take a police officer in Annapolis, MD, they start at about $40,000 a year and after a few years service rise to $70,000.
The difference between those 2 wages is rediculous for the same country. Maryland police are paid extremely high wages, while on the other hand Mississippi police are paid about the same as what a Polish or other Eastern European policeman would expect. Seriously, the police earn more in Israel than they do in Mississippi. However, it doesn’t make sense. Jackson is a much bigger, probably more dangerous city than Annapolis, so a Jackson cop has got a much harder job than one from Annapolis.
I am from Australia, and over here nation wide the police have a starting wage of $50,000, which rises to about $90,000 after a few years service.
So can anyone enlighten me as to why there is such a huge difference in pay levels across the US states? I was actually shocked to learn that the average wage in MS is about on par with what poor European countries would receive.
BTW, this isn’t a dig at America or anything, it’s just an observation I’ve made.

7 thoughts on “Why Is There Such A Huge Wage Difference Across States For The Same Type Of Jobs?”

  1. its much cheaper to live in Mississippi then Baltimore Maryland. its also much much more dangerous to work as a police officer in Baltimore Maryland along with a higher workload.

  2. because the cost of living in the U.S. varies greatly on where you are. If you live in Boston, MA, or a nearby area, the avg. home price is $250k or more, while if you live in the mid west, say, Montana, the avg. home price is $150k.

  3. Cost of living is different. The larger cities tend to have more money supply which devalues the money and inflates the cost of goods and services.

  4. It’s called supply and demand. The fewer people with the skills needed to do a job. The more valuable the worker is doing the job.

  5. Canadian RCMP have the same type of national starting wages, but my understanding is as several other people have pointed out, it depends on the economic strenght of what area of the country your in. So that same starting wage that you quoted for example will buy more, do more in some area’s. It’s the same with teacher’s salaries, depending on where they live it’s considered a ‘good’ wage, in other areas only average income. I’m sure in Australia you have locales that are richer and poorer, and if your police officer with the standardized wages lives in the poorer area, he actually makes a good income compaired to the locals, and might perhapes be just another average pay day to pay day joe in another city.

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