by Jack Lee
As you probably know the U.S. Census for 2010 has just been released. Here are some fast facts gleaned from that report. California largest percentage gain in ethnic population is Hispanic. It’s expected that Hispanics will be the majority population by 2050. Overall we’ve grown 10% since the last census in 2000. California’s population is now 37,253,956, despite the exodus of companies and good paying jobs.
Butte County’s pop. has grown slower than the State’s. We’re now at 220,577 with about 1% more females (50.8) than the state (49.9) in general.
20.7% of the people in Butte County now live below the poverty level. The per capita income is $17,517, which is about $5,000 lower than the state average. Compare that to the cost of fielding one police officer which is about $136,000 including wages and benefits.
Your federal tax dollars leave here and almost never come back.
Federal spending in the county was $1,661,321 which accounts for only about .05% of the total federal money spent in California. If it were not for a few large farm subsidies and some federal anti-pot money I hate to think what the dollar amount would be.
The stats say our county population is getting older and we’re not attracting young people or anything else for that matter. The obvious reason for the youth decline….no decent paying jobs.
Persons 65 and over now represent 15% of our county population and this is 4% higher than the state average. They county coffers won’t get rich off these fixed income types.
Persons under 18 years old trail the State average by 5%, again reflecting the aging population in the county.
The conclusion is, if you live here and you want a good paying job with great benefits and you are under 35, be a cop or a fireman or next in line work for the city or county. Last place to find a good job is in the private sector.
If you are the County Treasurer, you’re facing dwindling revenue sources thanks to an aging population and nearly 45% of your population that is either on welfare or fixed income retirement. Your budget overhead due to salary and benefit packages is growing disproportionately to your income stream (tax dollars) and that’s bad. The immediate econonmic picture is not good for Butte County and the cities within. But, I suppose you can take some solace knowing that in Illinois they are spending exactly twice as much as they now take in. We’re not that bad…yet. (Hey, wasn’t Obama from Illinois?)