Ontario County Data and Trends
Ontario County Data and Trends
Ontario County Report Card
The Ontario County Report Card aggregates data from more than 100 community indicators on the site and use symbols, colors and arrows to provide a quick, at-a-glance overview of the well-being of the county. This data cover the topics of Arts, Culture and Leisure, Children and Youth, Community Engagement, Economy, Education, Financial Self-Sufficiency, Health, Housing, and Public Safety.
Ontario County is booming. Of the nine counties in the ACT Rochester region, Ontario had the greatest growth in population, the highest median income, high rates of educational attainment, a high rate of residential building and increasing home values. Yet, poverty in Ontario County increased to 10%, more families are headed by single parents, and the rate of mothers accessing prenatal care early in their pregnancies declined slightly.
Ontario County experienced significant population growth over the decade, while most of the region had a steady or declining population. With just over 100,000 residents in 2000, Ontario County grew by over 8% to 108,500 residents in 2012. This growth in population surpassed the growth rate of the region (2%) and the state (3%).
Ontario County's population is aging. The number of adults 40 to 59 years old increased by 13% from 2000 to 2012, making it the largest segment of the population, consistent with regional, state and national trends. Ontario had the highest growth rates in the region for residents 60 to 84 and for those 85 and older, growing by 46% and 59% respectively from 2000 to 2012. These groups represent 23% of the total county population, and the increases highlight the growing need for sufficient elder care and support services.
Like the rest of the region, Ontario has experienced declines in the number of young adults. Since 2000, the number of residents between the ages of 20 and 39 decreased 8%, similar to the state and regional declines of 3% and 7% respectively. The number of children and young adults under 20 years old declined by 6%, compared to state and regional declines of 8% and 12% respectively.
Ontario County has grown more racially diverse, though it remained about 94% white. From 2000 to 2012, the greatest increases occurred in the Hispanic population (up 93%) and the Asian population (up 74%). The Hispanic population has become the largest minority group in the county, with over 4,100 residents. Ontario County also experienced a 21% increase in its African American population, to about 2,700 residents.
Ontario County has seen a decline in the share of households of married couples with children and an increase in households with people living alone. In 2008-12, about 21% of households in the county were composed of married couples with children living at home, compared to 25% in 2000. In the same time period, living-alone households grew from 25% to 28% of the total.
Arts, Culture & Leisure
Tourism is a growing business in Ontario County. In 2012, about $192 million was spent on tourism activities in the county, a 9% increase from 2005, even after adjusting for inflation. Ontario had the greatest per resident spending on tourism in the region at $1,800, compared to the regional figure of $1,200. Ontario County's tourism industry is expected to continue to grow with such attractions as the New York State Wine & Culinary Center, the renovated Constellation Brands Marvin Sands Performing Arts Center (also known as CMAC), and increased promotion of the Finger Lakes wine trails, winter sports venues, area museums and shops.
Public funding for the arts in Ontario County has declined. The county experienced a 53% decline in grants per resident from the New York State Council on the Arts between 2001 and 2012. Per-resident funding of $1.46 was slightly higher than the region but below the state.
Children and Youth
In 2008-12, about 12% of children in Ontario County were living in poverty, lower than the region (19%), state (21%) and nation (21%), and the lowest of all the counties. However, the proportion of children in poverty increased 2 points since 2000.
Similar to the region, state, and nation, Ontario County has seen an increase in the number of single-parent families. In 2008-12, 31% of families were headed by single parents, compared to 26% in 2000.
Ontario saw a decline in early prenatal care in the region, with the share of live births in which prenatal care began in the first trimester dropping 3 points to 79% in 2011, higher than the regional rate (77%). Also in 2011, 7.9% of live births were low birth weight babies, below the state rate but above the rate for the region and up from 6.4% in 2000.
Teen pregnancy rates have declined over the past decade, similar to most other counties in the region. In 2011, the teen pregnancy rate in Ontario was 2.5%, lower than the region (3.6%) and state (4.6%).
The proportion of registered voters in Ontario was the highest in the region and even with Monroe, with 84% of voting-age residents registered in 2012, higher than the regional rate of 82% and state rate of 78%. For the 2012 presidential election, 56% of voting-age residents voted, slightly exceeding the regional turnout of 55% and higher than the state and national rates of 46% and 54%, respectively. This was down from 63% for the 2008 presidential election.
Charitable giving decreased by 21% from 2002 to 2008. On average, Ontario donors gave $777 in 2008, the second highest level of giving in the region after Monroe at $1,000. As a percentage of income, Ontario donors gave 1.4% of their income in 2008, higher than most of the region but below the state level of 2%.
Overall, jobs in Ontario grew 9% over the decade, above the region and state. Ontario County has been part of the larger transition from manufacturing to knowledge-based industry. The number of jobs in the Professional and Business Services sector increased by almost 70% in Ontario between 2000 and 2012. There was also significant job growth in the Leisure and Hospitality (33%), Health Care and Social Assistance (25%), and Trade, Transportation and Utilities (10%) sectors.
The greatest job losses occurred in the Manufacturing (18%), Financial Activities (14%), and Construction (9%) sectors, similar to the region. Notably, Ontario experienced an 11% decline in jobs in the Information Services sector, though the region saw a decline of 32%.
Salaries in Ontario County increased 6% between 2000 and 2012 (adjusted for inflation), to about $39,600. That compares to salary growth of 5% in the nation and state, though salaries were lower in Ontario.
Ontario County felt the repercussions of the economic crisis of 2008-10. The county's unemployment rate hit a decade high of 7.6% in 2010, up from a low of 3.5% in 2000, before decreasing slightly to 7.5% in 2012. The rest of the region, along with the state and nation, mirrored this trend. Despite the increase, Ontario County still had the second lowest rate in the region, and was well below the rates for the state (8.5%) and nation (8.1%).
Education is an area of strength for Ontario County. Students in Ontario outperformed those across the state on most key state tests and graduated at higher rates. For example, 88% of Ontario County students passed the state Regents math exam, compared to 71% of students statewide. In 2012, 87% of Ontario students graduated on time, compared to 82% in the region and 77% statewide.
Ontario County, along with Monroe, consistently had the highest levels of educational attainment in the region. In 2008-12, 64% of Ontario County residents 25 and older had attended at least some college, about 6 percentage points above the state and national figures. This was up from 56% of residents in 2000.
Spending per student by Ontario County school districts has increased 27% since 2000, after adjusting for inflation. In 2012, Ontario County school districts spent $17,500 per student, below spending in surrounding counties and well below the state rate of $20,900.
Ontario County had the highest median household income in the region, but incomes have not kept pace with inflation. Ontario County's median household income in 2008-12 was about $56,500, below the state ($57,700) and above the nation ($53,000), and higher than its neighboring counties of Monroe ($52,700) and Wayne ($53,500). Adjusted for inflation, the county's median household income has actually declined 8% since 2000, while the state median decreased at a slower rate (4%).
Poverty in Ontario County increased to 10% in 2008-12 from 7% in 2000. Ontario had the lowest poverty rate in the region, below the state and nation (both 15%). Household incomes varied greatly among the county's racial and ethnic groups, and Hispanic and African American residents were more likely to live in poverty.
The proportion of people receiving temporary assistance in Ontario County has increased over the past decade by 24% to 13 per 1,000 residents, one of the highest increases in the region. Ontario’s rate was still far below the state (29) and region (32). There was a larger increase, 46%, in the rate of children benefiting from temporary assistance, and a large jump in the number of emergency meals served per resident from 2 in 2000 to 9 in 2012.
In 2010, 11% of Ontario residents under 65 were without health insurance, on par with the regional rate but below the state (14%) and nation (18%). Enrollment in the Medicaid program for the poor and disabled was 15% in 2012, below regional and state levels, though up 8 percentage points since 2000. Ontario had the second highest ratio of doctors to residents in 2010, with 27 doctors per 10,000 residents.
Mortality rates in Ontario County declined 7% from 2000 to 2011, to 729 per 100,000 residents. This was above the regional rate of 706 and the state rate of 644. Ontario residents experienced declines in mortality rates from heart disease (18%), cancer (25%), respiratory disease (39%), and stroke (20%) from 2000 to 2011. Mortality rates due to respiratory disease and stroke, though, were above regional and state levels.
Like other counties in the region, Ontario experienced an increase in the rate of chlamydia infections since 2001. However, Ontario’s rate of increase, 87%, was the smallest in the region. In 2012, there were 252 chlamydia infections per 100,000 residents in Ontario, just under the regional rate and well below the state rate.
Home values in Ontario County increased over the decade by 12% from 2000 to 2008-12, the highest growth in the region besides Yates County. Ontario's median home value of $135,500 was the highest in the region in 2008-12, above Monroe's median of $134,200.
Yet, homes in the county remained somewhat affordable. The ratio of home value to median household income was 2 in 2008-12; a ratio under 2 or 3 is considered affordable. While the highest ratio in the region, and 18% higher than in 2000, Ontario’s ratio was lower than the ratios for the state (3.7) and nation (2.7).
Ontario County had homeownership rate of 74% in 2008-12, higher than the national rate (66%) and 20 points greater than the state rate (54%).
Ontario County had the second highest rate of residential building permits issued, with 2.6 issued per 1,000 residents in 2012, compared to just 1.5 in the region and 1.3 in the state.
Crime rates fluctuated in Ontario County over the decade. Serious crimes increased 2% to a rate of 200 per 10,000 residents, and violent crimes (a subset of serious crimes) increased 29% to 14 per 10,000 residents in 2012. Meanwhile, property crime rates remained flat and other reported crimes fell by 16% over the same time period. In all categories, crime rates in Ontario were below regional, state and national rates.
Ontario experienced a 9% increase in the rate of felony drug-related arrest rates between 2000 and 2012. Ontario's rate of 6 arrests per 100,000 residents was below the region, and far below the state rate of 15.
Ontario County consistently had the lowest rate of Persons In Need of Supervision petitions in the region. The rate of PINS petitions declined to 0.8 per 1,000 youth in 2011, before rising to 1.5 in 2012. The state and region experienced a similar pattern. Juvenile delinquency intakes declined from 2000 to 67 per 10,000 children in 2012. This rate was slightly higher than the region (65) and lower than the rate for the state (77).
Note: Data research and analysis completed by the Center for Governmental Research
Banner photo provided by Peter "Skippy" Bushnell, Arts, Culture & Leisure Photo provided by New York Wine Culinary & Culinary Center