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.
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Seat of the women’s rights movement and home to other Finger Lakes attractions, Seneca County has growth in population, tourism revenue, jobs and salaries. Yet students in Seneca are lagging their peers across the state on most state tests and graduated at lower rates, and the rate of serious crimes has increased since 2000.
Seneca County had the second highest population growth in the region, increasing 6.2% since 2000 to about 35,400 residents in 2013. Seneca’s population was the second smallest in the region after Yates County. Over the decade, the region and state saw population growth of 1.7% and 3.6% respectively, while the nation’s population grew by 12.3%.
Similar to regional trends, Seneca County's population is aging. The number of adults 40 to 59 years old, the largest segment of the population, increased by 8% from 2000 to 2013, and the number of residents age 85 and older increased by 36%. Seneca experienced a decline in the population of residents under the age of 20 (10%), but the number of residents 20-39 years old increased by 4%, making Seneca the only county in the region to experience growth in the latter age group.
There were increases in minority populations in Seneca County, especially the African American population, although the county remained 92% white. From 2000 to 2013, the African American population more than doubled, while Seneca’s Hispanic and Asian populations also increased, by 73% and 22% respectively.
Seneca County has seen a decline in the share of households made up of married couples with children and an increase in some other types of households. In 2009-13, 17% of households in the county were composed of married couples with children, down from 23% in 2000. Households of singles with children made up 9%.
Arts, Culture and Leisure
Seneca County has experienced the second largest increase in tourism revenue in the region between 2005 and 2013. In 2013, $48 million was spent on tourism in the county, a 42% increase from 2005. In 2013, tourism revenue per resident was $1,360, compared to the regional figure of $1,250. However, recreational tourism revenue per resident fell 16%, from $49 in 2005 to $41 in 2013.
Children and Youth
In 2009-13, 14% of children in Seneca County were living in poverty, compared with 20% in the region and 22% in the state. Seneca’s proportion of children living in poverty dropped by 1 point since 2000, the only county in the region in which that was true.
Consistent with regional trends, Seneca County has experienced an increase in the proportion of single-parent families since 2000. In 2009-13, the percentage of single-parent families rose 5 points to 35%, the smallest increase in the region. The rate of child abuse and neglect has decreased in Seneca to 24.7 cases per 1,000 children, but remains one of the higher rates in the region and higher than the state (15.9).
Teen pregnancy has declined slightly from 4.8% of 15- to 19-year-olds in 2000 to 3.0% in 2012. Seneca’s rate was below the region (3.1%) and state (4.1%) in 2012.
Seneca had the second lowest rate of early prenatal care in the region in 2012, with 68% of mothers accessing early care, a 7-point drop since 2000.
Voter registration in Seneca County lagged behind state and regional rates. In 2013, 74% of voting age adults were registered, below the 79% for the region and 76% for the state. In the presidential election of 2012, 47% of voting age residents voted, below the region and nation but above the state. That was the lowest voter participation rate of the last four presidential elections.
Charitable giving per person in Seneca County was the third lowest in the region after Orleans and Wyoming. On average, Seneca County donors gave $497 in 2012, an 18% decline since 2002. As a portion of income, Seneca donors gave 1.1% to charity in 2012.
Seneca experienced 8% job growth since 2000—the third highest rate of growth in the region. Of the sectors that experienced growth, Financial Activities (44%) and Government (11%) grew at the highest rates. The largest declines came in Professional and Business Services (18%) and Information (48%), though those were both responsible for only a small proportion of jobs in Seneca. The fourth largest sector that saw a decline in jobs was Leisure and Hospitality, which fell 2%, and had 8% of all jobs in the county in 2013.
Like other counties in the region, Seneca saw drastic increases in its unemployment rate from 2007 to 2010, from 4.5% to 8.1%. Unemployment stayed fairly constant from 2010 to 2012, but dropped substantially in 2013, to 6.9%, below the regional rate of 7.1%, the state rate of 7.7% and the national rate of 7.4%. The total number of unemployed in Seneca County has almost doubled since 2000, increasing from 680 to 1,140 residents in 2013.
Seneca County's average salary increased over 15% since 2000 to roughly $41,400. While this was still below the nation, state, and region, Seneca experienced the largest growth among counties in the region over that period.
The percentage of 4-year olds participating in prekindergarten programs was 40% in Seneca County, about even with the region but below the 46% in the state. Participation increased 16 percentage points since 2001, compared to increases of about 30 points in the region and state.
Students in Seneca did not perform as well as those in other counties on most key state tests. For example, in 2012, Seneca had the lowest percentage of students passing Regents English (75%) and the second lowest percentage of students passing Regents Math (74%) in the region. These rates compare to 77% and 74% in the state, respectively. In 2013, 78% of Seneca students graduated on time (in 4 years), the lowest rate of graduation in the region and even with the statewide rate.
Seneca County adults age 25 and over had less formal education than adults in the region, state or nation. In 2009-13, 51% of adults in Seneca had attended at least some college, compared to 60% in the region and 58% in the state and nation. However, Seneca's rate was up from 43% of adult residents in 2000. Seneca also had the highest percentage of adults without a high school diploma (15%) in the region, down from 21% in 2000.
Spending per student by school districts in Seneca County has increased 60% since 2000, after adjusting for inflation. In 2013, Seneca school districts spent $20,700 per student, the highest level of spending in the region but below the state rate.
Similar to the rest of the region, incomes in Seneca County have not kept pace with inflation and have worsened as a result of the 2008-2010 recession. Seneca County's median household income in 2009-13 was $47,600, lower than the state ($58,000) and the nation ($53,000). Adjusted for inflation, the county's median income has declined 8% since 2000, compared to a 4% decrease statewide.
The rate of people living in poverty in Seneca increased only slightly, from 11% in 2000 to 12% in 2009-13, compared to 14% in the region and 15% in the state and nation.
Seneca had a 29% increase in the rate of residents receiving temporary assistance between 2001 and 2013, compared to an 8% increase in the region. Seneca’s approval rate for public assistance applications was the second lowest in the region behind Monroe at 32%, compared with 39% in the state (excluding NYC). Similar to other counties in the region, the number of emergency meals served increased in Seneca County from 10.0 per resident in 2000 to 15.1 in 2013, a 51% increase and the highest rate in the region.
Seneca had one of the smallest rates of children receiving subsidized child care in the region in 2013 at just 1.3% of children under age 13, even with Wayne and below all other counties. This was a decline from 1.6% in 2007 and lower than the 2013 rates in the region (3.9%) and state excluding New York City (2.4%).
In 2012, 12% of Seneca County residents under the age of 65 lacked health insurance, above the regional rate of 10%, but lower than the state (13%) and the nation (17%). The percentage of residents enrolled in Medicaid increased by 9 percentage points in Seneca between 2000 and 2013, to 18%.
Like other counties in the region, Seneca has seen declines in mortality rates since 2000. Seneca County residents had declines in mortality rates from heart disease (36%), cancer (32%), chronic lower respiratory disease (28%), and stroke (27%). Seneca’s mortality rate from cancer declined more than any other county in the region.
Seneca County experienced a large increase in the number of reported cases of chlamydia infections, in line with regional and state trends. In 2013, Seneca had 274 cases per 10,000 residents, up from 112 in 2001. Despite a 10% decrease since 2001, Seneca had the highest rate for mental health clinic visits in the region in 2011, at 8.6 per 1,000 residents, compared to 6.7 in the region and 6.3 in the state.
A rural county, Seneca County had the lowest rate in our region of doctors per 10,000 residents at 6 in 2010. This was substantially less than the regional rate (28) and state rate (35).
Homes in Seneca County have largely retained their value, with the median value decreasing just 1% since 2000. In 2009-13, Seneca had a median home value of about $94,400, the second lowest in the region and much lower than both the national figure ($176,700) and the state ($288,200).
In 2009-13, the homeownership rate in Seneca was 74%, an increase of just one point from 2000. This rate was higher than the region (69%), state (54%) and nation (65%).
Seneca is more affordable for home owners than for renters. Rent consumed about 34% of median household income in 2009-13, above the threshold for affordability of 30%. The ratio of median home value to income increased slightly from 2000 through 2009-13, to 1.7, but remained below the level of 2 or 3 considered affordable.
Crime rates mostly increased in Seneca County over the decade. Rates of serious crime in Seneca increased 8% from 2000 to 2013, and rates of violent crimes and property crimes (subsets of serious crimes) increased 85% and 4% respectively. Rates of other reported crimes did fall sharply, however, by 58%.
Note: Data research and analysis completed by the Center for Governmental Research