Seneca County Data And Trends
Seneca County Data And Trends
Seneca County Report Card
The Seneca 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.
Click on the picture below for the full report.
Formed in 1804, Seneca is a geographically small county located southeast of Rochester, between Cayuga and Seneca Lakes. Seneca is well known as the home to the 1848 Seneca Falls Women’s Rights Convention, a pivotal first step in the modern Women’s Rights Movement.
While Seneca is the second smallest county by population and smallest by area in the Finger Lakes Region, its population has grown more than the region and every regional county besides Ontario. Seneca was the only county in the region to see a 6% decrease in its child poverty rate from 2006-10 to 2011-15. However, Seneca has a particularly low rate of prekindergarten participation and lags behind its peers on most state tests.
Seneca County had the second highest population growth in the region:
- Seneca’s population grew by 4.5% from 2000 to 2015, a greater increase than the state (4.3%) and region (1.4%) but below the nation (14%).
- Seneca’s population in 2015 was 34,800 – just 3% of the total regional population – and was the second smallest county by population in the region.
Like other counties in the region, Seneca County’s population is aging:
- Seneca’s population 85 and older grew by 41% from 2000 to 2015, below the growth in the nation (48%) but above growth for the state and region (both 39%). Seneca also had a large increase (31%) in the number of residents ages 60 to 84 – below the nation (46%) and region (39%) but above the state (28%).
- Seneca’s population under 20 fell by 14%, just below the region (15%) but above the loss for the state (9%) and in contrast to a 2% increase nationally. However, the number of residents ages 20 to 39 grew by 4%, in contrast to the decline in the region (4.4%).
All ethnic groups in Seneca grew in population, but growth was faster for minorities:
- The comparatively small number of Asian, African American, and Hispanic residents grew from 2000 to 2015, while the number of white residents remained essentially flat. The African American population grew by 138%, well above increases for the state (4%) and region (15%).
- However, Seneca remained overwhelmingly white (92% of total population): in 2015, African Americans and Hispanics made up just 5% and 3% of the total population respectively.
The share of households with married couples fell from 2000 to 2011-15, while the share of households with residents living alone grew:
- In 2011-15, 17% of households were composed of married couples with children, a 6-point decrease from 2000. The proportion of households with married couples without children stayed flat, at 30% in 2011-15.
- From 2000 to 2011-15, households with residents living alone grew from 25% of the total to 30%, a greater increase than the state, region and nation.
Arts, Culture and Leisure
Between 2005 and 2015, total tourism revenue grew more than the state and region, while recreational revenue per resident fell:
- In 2015, Seneca County generated $1,410 in tourism revenue per resident, below the state ($3,186) but above the region ($1,290). From 2005, tourism revenue per resident grew by 46%, more than the increase for the state (16%) and region (6%).
- Tourism revenue in Seneca ($49 million) made up 3% of the region’s total tourism revenue, a share in line with its relative population. From 2005, Seneca’s total revenue grew by 44%, a larger increase than the region (7%) and every county in the region besides Yates.
However, recreational spending per resident has fallen since 2005 and is lower than the state and region:
- In 2015, there was $46 in recreation spending per resident in Seneca, lower than the state ($331) and region ($70). Revenue per resident fell by 10% since 2008, on par with the region, but in contrast to the state (up 2%).
Children and Youth
The child poverty rate in Seneca is relatively low and has increased less than the state, nation and region:
- In 2011-15, the child poverty rate in Seneca was 16%, lower than the region (21%), state and nation (both 22%). Seneca had a lower rate than all counties in the region but Ontario.
- The child poverty rate rose 6 points from 2000 to 2006-10 before falling 6 points from 2006-10 to 2011-15, for a net increase of zero over that timeframe. Seneca, along with Yates, were the only counties where the child poverty rate fell from 2006-10 to 2011-15, in contrast to the 3-point increase both regionally and nationally, and the 2-point increase statewide during that period.
The rate of single-parent families has increased since 2000, but by less than the region and nation:
- In 2011-15, 34% of Seneca families were headed by single parents, lower than the state (37%) and region (39%). Seneca’s rate was lower than the average for the counties surrounding Monroe.
- The rate of single-parent families increased by 8 points in Seneca from 2000 to 2006-10, then fell by 3 points from 2006-10 to 2011-15. Like the child poverty rate, Seneca’s decrease from 2006-10 to 2011-15 was in contrast to increases across the nation, state, region and every regional county, except for Yates.
Seneca’s rate of child abuse and neglect has consistently been higher than the state and region:
- In 2015, there were 26 cases of abuse and neglect per 1,000 children in Seneca – well above the state (14) and regional (16) rates, and higher than any other county rate in the region, except for Yates.
- Seneca’s rate has decreased since 2000, in contrast to a 3% increase for the state and 11% increase regionally.
Teen pregnancy fell by 35% from 4.8% of 15- to 19-year-olds in 2000 to 3.1% in 2014. Seneca’s rate in 2014 was above the region (2.5%) and below the state (3.3%).
Seneca was lagging in mothers accessing early prenatal care, with 68% of mothers in 2014 accessing early care, a decrease from 73% in 2000. Seneca’s rate in 2014 was below the state (75%) and region (79%).
Voter registration in Seneca County lagged behind state and regional rates:
- In 2015, 73% of voting-age adults were registered, below 78% for the region and 75% for the state.
- The registration rate fell by 14 points from 2000 – by far the largest drop in the region, and a greater decrease than the state and region (both 4 points).
In the midterm election of 2014, 34% of voting-age residents voted, just below the region (35%) but above the state (25%). Similarly, Seneca’s turnout of 47% in the 2012 presidential election was below the region (55%) but just above the state (46%).
Seneca County’s registered borrowers decreased by 6% since 2000, but library visits have increased:
- In 2015, 62% of residents of Seneca’s county library system were registered borrowers, above the state (57%) but below the region (64%).
- The number of library visits has increased 70% in Seneca, higher than the state and region, and every other county in the region besides Livingston.
In 2013, charitable giving in Seneca County, at $3,121 per tax return, was the fourth highest in the region after Ontario, Monroe, and Yates. Average charitable giving is up 15% from 2002, a larger increase than the state and region.
While the unemployment rate has recovered somewhat since the recession, it remains higher than in 2000:
- In 2015, the unemployment rate in Seneca was 5.2%, similar to the nation and state (both 5.3%), and on par with the region.
- The unemployment rate has fallen by 3 points since its peak in 2010 (8.2%) – a lower drop over that period than the state and region – but still remains 1 point above its low in 2000.
Job growth since 2000 has outpaced most regional counties:
- The total number of jobs grew 7% from 2000 to 2015 in Seneca, a larger increase than the region (2%), but lower than the state and nation (16% and 15% respectively).
- The Manufacturing sector neither lost nor gained jobs from 2001 to 2015, in contrast to large decreases for the nation, state, and region. The number of Government jobs rose 21%, versus decreases of 2% each for the state and region.
- In 2015, the largest sectors were Government, Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (20% and 19% of the total respectively) and Manufacturing jobs accounting for 15% of the total nonfarm workforce.
- Salary growth in Seneca was well above the state, nation, and region, although the average salary remained lower than the nation, state, and region in 2015:
- In 2015, the average salary in Seneca was $43,300, compared to $52,900 for the nation, $67,500 for the state, and $47,100 for the region.
- The average salary grew by 18% from 2000 to 2015 even after adjusting for inflation – a greater increase than the nation, state (both 9%), region (5%) and every other county in the region except Ontario. Seneca’s salary growth was slightly higher than the surrounding counties as a whole (17%).
Seneca’s prekindergarten participation rate was very low compared to the state and region:
- In 2015, just 32% of eligible children were enrolled in prekindergarten, compared to 47% for the state and 42% for the region.
- Seneca’s participation rate rose just 7 points from 2001, in contrast to increases of 33 and 31 points for the state and region.
Students in Seneca generally matched their peers in the state and region on Common Core-aligned tests in English but fared worse in math:
- In 2016, 38% passed 8th grade English and 37% passed 3rd grade English, similar to state and regional levels.
- However, just 12% passed 8th grade math, below the state’s 24%, and 37% passed 4th grade math.
Seneca students performed relatively better on Regents tests:
- In 2016, 80% of students passed the Common Core Algebra 1 Regents, compared to 75% for the region and 72% for the state.
- Seneca’s pass rate for English Regents in 2016 (93%) was above the region (87%) and the state (86%).
Seneca’s graduation rate has improved, rising 11 points from 2008 to 84%, level with the region.
Adults in Seneca were less educated than in the nation, state or region:
- In 2011-15, 51% of Seneca residents ages 25 and older had attended at least some college, lower than in the region (61%), nation (59%), and state (59%).
- Seneca also had a particularly low rate of adults who had attained a bachelor’s or higher (20%) compared to the state (34%) and region (31%).
- The percent of adults who had less than a high school diploma was higher in Seneca (15%) than the region (10%) and the state (14%).
Spending per student by school districts in Seneca County has increased 92% since 2000, after adjusting for inflation – a greater increase than the state, region and every county in the region. In 2015, Seneca school districts spent $25,300 per student, above every county in the region and the state.
Like the state, region and nation, median household income in Seneca has been falling relative to inflation:
- In 2011-15, the median household income in Seneca was $49,300, below the nation ($53,900), state ($59,300), and region ($52,300).
- Median income fell by 7% from 2000 to 2011-15, a bit more than decreases in the state (4%) but below the national (10%) and regional (15%) decline.
The poverty rate rose from 2000 to 2011-15, but remains below the nation, state, and region:
- In 2011-15, 13% of Seneca residents lived below the poverty line, compared to 16% for the state, 15% for the nation, and 14% for the region.
- The rate rose by 1 point from 2000 to 2011-15, on par with the state increase but below the nation and region (3 and 4 points respectively).
Despite increasing from 2001, the rate of people receiving temporary assistance was lower than the state and region:
- In 2015, 1.5% of Seneca residents received temporary assistance, versus 2.9% statewide and 3.1% in the region.
- The rate rose by 0.6 points from 2001 to 2015, a greater increase than the region (0.3 points) and in contrast to a 0.7 point decrease for the state.
In 2015, Seneca had a higher rate of people receiving emergency food (16 meals per resident) than the state (7.1), region (7.0), and every regional county. The rate rose by 63% from 2001, which was a smaller increase than for the region (126%) and every county in the region.
The rate of residents in Seneca lacking health insurance has fallen steadily since 2008:
- In 2014, 9% of Seneca residents lacked health insurance, a lower proportion than the state (10%) and nation (14%) but higher than the region (7%).
- The rate dropped 5 points from 2008 to 2014, a larger drop than the state and region.
The percent of people enrolled in Medicaid Managed Care is lower than the region and state:
- In 2014, 14% of Seneca residents were enrolled in Medicaid Managed Care, versus 23% statewide and 17% in the region.
- The percentage rose by 1 point from 2014 to 2015, a similar increase to most other counties in the region.
Seneca’s mortality rate has risen over the past several years, in contrast with a general decline in the region and state:
- In 2014, there were 751 deaths per 100,000 residents, an increase in rate of over 100 deaths per 100,000 residents from 2013 when the rate was 650. The rate in 2014 was also higher than the state (618) and region (685).
- Although the rate increased from 2013, it is still 12% lower than in 2000.
Seneca County experienced a large increase in the number of reported cases of chlamydia infections since 2001, in line with regional and state trends. In 2015, Seneca had 287 cases per 10,000 residents, more than double the rate in 2001. However, Seneca had a 21% decrease in rate from 2014 - the larger of only two decreases from the previous year among the counties in the region.
A rural county, Seneca County had the lowest concentration of doctors in the region (7 doctors per 10,000 residents) in 2014. This was substantially less than the regional (32) and state (37) rates.
The median home value in Seneca was much lower than the state, nation, and region:
- In 2011-15, the median home value in Seneca was $97,000, compared to $178,600 for the nation, $283,400 for the state, and $128,700 for the region.
- Median home value remained relatively unchanged from 2000 to 2011-15, in contrast to small decreases in the region and surrounding counties (each about 2%) and large increases nationally (16%) and statewide (39%).
In 2011-15, the homeownership rate in Seneca was 72%, higher than the region (68%), state (54%) and nation (64%), and a small decrease from 74% in 2000.
Seneca is more affordable for home owners than for renters. Rent consumed 35% of median household income in 2011-15, above the threshold for affordability of 30%. The ratio of median home value to income remained relatively unchanged from 2000 to 2011-15, at 1.6, and remained below the state (3.5), nation (2.6), and region (1.9).
The rate of serious crimes in Seneca has stayed flat, in contrast to decreases for the state, nation, and region:
- In 2015 there were 206 serious crimes per 10,000 people in Seneca County, less than the nation (286) and region (231), but higher than the state (196). However, Seneca had the second-highest rate among each county in the region.
- The serious crime rate held steady from 2000, in contrast to large decreases for the state, region, and nation.
Although lower than the state, nation, and region, Seneca’s violent crime rate has doubled from 9 per 10,000 residents in 2000 to 18 in 2015, in contrast to declines in the nation and state. This was also the largest increase among the regional counties since 2000.
Note: Data research and analysis completed by the Center for Governmental Research