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Greenwich Strikes it Rich as Income Grows

Greenwich may not be the richest town in the state, but it's close. Westport and Greenwich were the only towns in Fairfield County to show an increase in family median income in 2010, despite the economic downturn in even some of the most affluent towns in the state.

Based on family median income, which rose in Greenwich from $126,278 in 2009 to $130,498 in 2010, the town is ranked eighth in the county and state. For the first time in more than a decade, Darien is on top as the richest town in Connecticut, at $185,619 in 2010, moving up from third to first. New Canaan is second at $180,434.

The figures were compiled by the Connecticut Economic Resource Center Inc. in Rocky Hill, a nonprofit agency that researches and provides economic data used by the state.

Greenwich officials cited several reasons for increase even as most of the other 22 Fairfield County municipalities experienced declines.

"The median-income figures should be interpreted as one of many indicators of the relative financial stability of the town of Greenwich, so we are pleased," said Dustin Anderson, executive assistant to the first selectman. "Close proximity to New York City, being a coastal town with outstanding schools, parks and beaches, draws very talented people with high incomes to Greenwich.

"But it's not so much anything the town is doing, as it is the people who are choosing to live here that contributed to the median income rising," he said.

Alissa DeJonge, director of research for the Connecticut Economic Resource Center, said that despite the declines, Fairfield County continues to have the highest family median income of any county in the state.

She said the median income dropped in Fairfield County from $82,184 in 2009 to $77,620 in 2010.

"Even in affluent places the median income declined because companies have downsized and people have taken positions that pay less," she said. "Executives who stayed with their companies did not receive the large bonuses they have in the past."

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