Money's list of America's best small cities


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57. Piscataway, NJ
Piscataway
WINNER
Top 100 rank: 57
Population: 53,000
Compare Piscataway to Top 10 Best Places
Rutgers University takes up a good chunk of this town's 19 square miles. Athletics are big here, with the township providing a free service for youth to join recreational leagues.

With a growing corporate presence -- it's home to an emerging technology industry -- Piscataway has many employment opportunities. It's also a 45-minute train commute to midtown Manhattan. --N.A.

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Is Piscataway a great town, or what?
Piscataway stats
  City stats Best places avg.
Median family income
(per year)
$99,032 $90,957
Job growth %
(2000-2009)*
1.75% 15.71%
See jobs near Piscataway
Median home price $285,000 $239,391
See Piscataway homes for sale
Test scores reading
(% above/below state average)
21.0% 22.9%
Test scores math
(% above/below average)
17.3% 22.9%
Personal crime incidents (per 1,000) 23 2
Property crime incidents (per 1,000) 243 24
Restaurants
(within 15 miles)
4,688 2,967
High temp in July ° F 85.7° 86.2°
Low temp in Jan ° F 21.0° 21.3°
Median age 34.9 35.3
Financial City stats Best places avg.
Median family income
(per year)
$99,032 $90,957
Family purchasing power
(annual, cost-of-living adjusted)
$83,713 $86,860
State sales tax 7.00% 5.45%
State income tax rate
(highest bracket)
10.75%I 7.35%
State income tax rate
(lowest bracket)
1.40%I 2.96%
Auto insurance premiums
(Average price quotes, for the state)
$2,772 $1,707
Job growth %
(2000-2009)*
1.75% 15.71%
See jobs near Piscataway
Housing
Median home price $285,000 $239,391
Average property taxes
(2008)
$8,140 $3,418
See Piscataway homes for sale
Education
Colleges, universities and
professional schools (within 30 miles)
90 25
Test scores reading
(% above/below state average)
21.0% 22.9%
Test scores math
(% above/below average)
17.3% 22.9%
% students attending public/private
schools (located within town limits)
83.7/16.3 87.8/12.2
Quality of life
Air quality index*
(% of days AQI ranked as good)
71.0% 77.8%
Personal crime incidents (per 1,000) 23 2
Property crime incidents (per 1,000) 243 24
Median commute time (in minutes) 21.8 21.4
% population with commute
45 mins. or longer
21.0% 13.6%
% population walk or bike to work 3.4% 3.6%
Leisure and culture
Movie theaters
(within 15 miles)
40 31
Restaurants
(within 15 miles)
4,688 2,967
Bars
(within 15 miles)
306 207
Public golf courses
(within 30 miles)
265 162
Libraries
(within 15 miles)
121 72
Museums (accredited by AAM;
within 30 miles)
27 10
Ski resorts (within 100 miles) 31 12
Arts funding (Dollars per person of state funds spent on arts) 2.1 1.5
Weather
Annual rainfall
(inches)
49.23 37.40
% clear days in the area 26 29
High temp in July ° F 85.7° 86.2°
Low temp in Jan ° F 21.0° 21.3°
Median age 34.9 35.3
Completed at least some college
(% of residents)
66.6% 71.5%
Married % 53.0% 56.6%
Divorced % 5.9% 8.4%
Racial diversity index
(100 is national average; higher numbers indicate greater diversity)
331.2 94.9
From the August 2010 issue
Notes: *County data
(3) Crime incidences are estimates based on FBI 2008 Universal Crime and incidence reports, OnBoard analysis.

(I) Income tax notes:
The tax brackets reported are for single individuals. For married couples filing jointly, the tax rates range from 1.4% to 10.75% (with 9 income brackets) applying to income brackets from $20,000 to over $1 million.
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Find Your Best Places
Region
Northeast South
Midwest West
Ranking
Top 100 winners only
Population
8.4M
46,000
Home Prices
2009 median sales prices
$1.2M
$36K
Video
Using statistics from data provider Onboard Informatics, we crunched the numbers in order to zero in on America's best small cities for families. (Last year, we looked at small towns, with populations between 8,500 and 50,000.) More

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