Data center facilities pro

Dec 16 2008   2:04PM GMT

eBay to build data center in Utah, pay workers 50% over median wage

Mark Fontecchio Mark Fontecchio Profile: Mark Fontecchio

Rich Miller at Data Center Knowledge has this post about eBay deciding on Utah for their next data center. The Deseret News writes that about 50 new jobs will be created and are expected to pay 50% above the median wage in Salt Lake County.

Some other quick details: The Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development gave eBay a $27.3 million tax break; new state wages from the project over 10 years is projected at $23.7 million, and new state revenue for that same period is estimated at $109.1 million.

The part about 50% above median wage was what interested me. What was the Salt Lake County median wage? I wondered. The Deseret News story didn’t mention it, and as of this morning, I hadn’t yet read the Salt Lake Tribune story on eBay’s data center plans.

What I did find was a document on the GOED’s website. It’s a PDF document of the minutes of a GOED meeting in May 2007. It mentions another project by Air Liquide, a producer of industrial and medical gases. The project is bringing in 43 new jobs paying an average of $64,083, “which is 224% of the Salt Lake County median wage.”

From that I determined that the median wage in Salt Lake County is about $28,600, and that 50% above that — what eBay says will be the average for their jobs there — is about $42,900. That coincides with what the Salt Lake Tribune story said.

Just out of curiosity, I looked on the GOED site for anything regarding eBay, and found another PDF document of the minutes of a GOED meeting in June of this year. On that document it said the average salary for the eBay workers would be “over 175%” of the Salt Lake County median wage, which would be about $50,000.That’s considerably higher than $42,900.

So what gives? Data center employees are now only worth a little more than $40,000 a year?

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