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.
With a 9% increase in residents from 2000 to 2013, Ontario County is one of only two counties in the region to boast significant population growth. It also has the highest median income and home values in the region, along with strong job growth. Yet the county has challenges: the share of people needing public assistance increased 26% over the past decade and that rate rose faster among children (42%). Likewise, the need for emergency meals has more than tripled.
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 8.9% to 109,000 residents in 2013. This growth in population surpassed the growth rate of the region (1.7%) and the state (3.6%).
Ontario County's population is aging. The number of adults 40 to 59 years old increased by 11% from 2000 to 2013, 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 51% and 64% respectively from 2000 to 2013. These groups represent 24% of the total county population, and their 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 5%, similar to the state and regional declines of 2% and 6% respectively. The number of children and young adults under 20 years old declined by 7%, compared to state and regional declines of 8% and 13% respectively.
Ontario County has grown more racially diverse, though it remained about 94% white. From 2000 to 2013, the greatest increases occurred in the Hispanic population (up 109%) and the Asian population (up 79%). The Hispanic population has become the largest minority group in the county, with 4,500 residents. Ontario County also experienced a 27% increase in its African American population, to about 2,800 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 2009-13, about 20% 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 27% of the total.
Arts, Culture & Leisure
Tourism is a growing business in Ontario County. In 2013, about $194 million was spent on tourism activities in the county, a 9% increase from 2005, even after adjusting for inflation. Ontario had the second-highest per-resident spending on tourism in the region at $1,800, compared to the regional figure of $1,250. 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 88% since 2001. Much of this decline came between 2012 and 2013, when per-student funding fell from $1.48 to $0.35, a 77% decline in a single year. That compared to 2013 funding levels of $1.10 in the region and $1.64 statewide.
Children and Youth
In 2009-13, about 12% of children in Ontario County were living in poverty, lower than the region (20%), state (22%) and nation (22%), and the lowest of all counties in the region. However, the percentage 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 2009-13, 33% of families were headed by single parents, compared to 26% in 2000.
Ontario has the highest rates of early prenatal care in the region, with the share of live births in which prenatal care began in the first trimester at 82% in 2012. Also in 2012, 6.2% of live births were low birth weight babies, below the state and regional rates and down from 6.4% in 2000.
Teen pregnancy rates have declined over the past decade, similar to most other counties in the region. In 2012, the teen pregnancy rate in Ontario was 2.5%, lower than the region (3.1%) and state (4.1%).
The proportion of registered voters in Ontario was the highest in the region, with 82% of voting-age residents registered in 2013, higher than the regional rate of 79% and state rate of 76%. 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, and the lowest participation rate of the last four presidential elections.
Charitable giving in Ontario County decreased by 11% from 2002 to 2012. On average, Ontario donors gave $908 in 2012, the second highest level of giving in the region after Monroe at $1,100. As a percentage of income, Ontario residents donated 1.5% of their income in 2012, higher than most of the region but below the state level of 2.2%.
Overall, jobs in Ontario grew 12% 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 more than doubled between 2000 and 2013, giving it 9% of all jobs in the county. Other major sectors experiencing job growth were Health Care and Social Assistance (up 15%, to 12% of all jobs in the county) and Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (up 18%, to 20% of all jobs in the county).
Some of the greatest job losses occurred in the Manufacturing (-8%) sector, the third-largest sector in Ontario in 2000 but the fifth-largest in 2013. Construction (-7%) and Government (-3%) were the other major sectors in Ontario to experience declines in jobs.
The average salary in Ontario County increased 11.6% between 2000 and 2013 (adjusted for inflation), to about $42,100. That compares to salary growth of about 4% in the nation and state, though average 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 to 6.6% in 2013. 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 (7.7%) and nation (7.4%).
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, 89% of Ontario County students passed the state Regents math exam, compared to 74% of students statewide. In 2013, 89% of Ontario students graduated on time, compared to 82% in the region and 78% statewide.
Ontario County, along with Monroe, consistently had the highest levels of educational attainment in the region. In 2009-13, 63% of Ontario County residents 25 and older had attended at least some college, about 5 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 28% since 2000, after adjusting for inflation. In 2013, Ontario County school districts spent $17,900 per student, below spending in surrounding counties and well below the state rate of $21,100.
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 2009-13 was about $56,500, below the state ($58,000) and above the nation ($53,000), and higher than its neighboring counties of Monroe ($52,400) and Wayne ($52,600). Adjusted for inflation, the county's median household income has actually declined 9% since 2000, while the state median decreased at a slower rate (4%).
Poverty in Ontario County increased to 10% in 2009-13 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 26% to 13.4 per 1,000 residents, one of the largest increases in the region. Ontario’s rate was still far below the state (29.4) and region (33.3). There was a larger increase, 42%, in the rate of children benefiting from temporary assistance, and a large jump in the number of emergency meals served per resident from 2.2 in 2000 to 8.4 in 2013.
In 2012, 9% of Ontario residents under 65 were without health insurance, on par with the regional rate but below the state (13%) and nation (17%). Enrollment in the Medicaid program for the poor and disabled was 15% in 2013, below regional and state levels, though up 9 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 11% from 2000 to 2012, to 697 per 100,000 residents. This was approximately even with the regional rate of 691 and above the state rate of 632. Ontario residents experienced declines in mortality rates from heart disease (29%), cancer (29%), respiratory disease (31%), and stroke (26%) from 2000 to 2012. 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, 122%, was among the smallest in the region. In 2013, there were 300 chlamydia infections per 100,000 residents in Ontario, well below the regional rate and the state rate.
Home values in Ontario County increased over the decade by 12% from 2000 to 2009-13, the highest rate of growth in the region besides Yates County. Ontario's median home value of $138,000 was the highest in the region in 2009-13, above Monroe's median of $136,000.
Yet, homes in the county remained somewhat affordable. The ratio of home value to median household income was 2.0 in 2009-13; a ratio under 2 or 3 is considered affordable. While the highest ratio in the region, and 19% higher than in 2000, Ontario’s ratio was lower than the ratios for the state (3.6) and nation (2.6).
Ontario County had a homeownership rate of 74% in 2009-13, higher than the national rate (65%) and the state rate (54%).
Ontario County had the highest rate of residential building permits issued, with 3.1 issued per 1,000 residents in 2013, compared to just 1.3 in the region and 1.7 in the state.
Crime rates have been stable or declined in Ontario County. Serious crimes stayed basically flat, at a rate of 191 per 10,000 residents in 2013, as did violent crimes (a subset of serious crimes), at a rate of 11 per 10,000 residents in 2013. Property crime rates also declined very slightly, by 3%, to 180 per 10,000 residents, but the rate of other reported crimes fell by 20% over the same time period, to 421 per 10,000 residents. In all categories, crime rates in Ontario were below regional, state and national rates.
Ontario experienced a 47% increase in the rate of felony drug-related arrest rates between 2000 and 2013. Ontario's rate of 8 arrests per 100,000 residents was in-line with the region, and far below the state rate of 15.
Ontario County has a higher rate of juvenile delinquency intakes than the region or the state, although they did decline from 178 per 10,000 children in 2000 to 98 in 2013.
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