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El Paso County by the numbers

The U.S. Census Bureau has crunched the numbers from the 2010 census, and El Paso County has grown more than any other county in Colorado.From 2000 to 2010, El Paso County’s population grew to 622,263 people; and, for the first time, surpassed Denver County’s population of 600,158.El Paso County’s 20.4 percent growth more than doubled Denver County’s 8.2 percent growth and also topped growth in the state as a whole. The 2010 census counted 5,029,126 people living in Colorado, up from 4,301,261 in 2000 ñ or 16.9 percent growth.The median age in El Paso County is 34.1 years old, with a fairly even distribution of people of all ages through the age of 60. For example, about 7 percent are under age 5, and about 7 percent are between age 50 and 54.Just 4.8 percent of El Paso County residents are between age 60 and 64, and 1.2 percent are over the age of 85 (7,203 people).At 50.2 percent, women outnumber men (49.8) in the county.Almost 80 percent of El Paso County residents are white; 6.2 percent black; 2.7 percent Asian and 1 percent American Indian.Sixty-eight percent live in family households, with an average family size of 3.1 people.In 2010, El Paso County had 252,852 housing units. About 22 percent of those housing units are multi-family. Two-thirds live in owner-occupied housing, and a third rent.In 2009, the per capita income for El Paso County residents was $27,750, slightly lower than Colorado’s per capita income of $29,679. The median household income was $55,621, nearly the same for all of Colorado.The percentage of people living below the poverty level in El Paso County in 2009 is 11.5 percent, less than the state as a whole (12.6 percent).In 2009, 92.3 percent of people over age 25 were high school graduates and 34.9 percent held a bachelor’s degree or higher. That same year, 74,560 were military veterans.As reported by the “Gazette” on July 21, an analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data shows that in 2009, El Paso County received $10.8 billion in federal money. The $10.8 billion equals out to $17,800 per person ñ more per capita than Colorado as a whole ($14,000) and the nation ($10,500).To see more census data, visit of Life IndicatorsLast fall, Pikes Peak United Way released its fifth annual Quality of Life Indicators report.The report uses statistical data to measure 10 categories that reflect quality of life in areas like transportation, arts and culture and health care, said Lisa Bachman, QLI steering committee member.The QLI uses the El Paso County Business Conditions Index to monitor the local economy. The BCI keeps track of housing permits, new car registrations, the employment rate, the foreclosure rate, wages and salaries, sales tax, airport enplanements, consumer sentiment and the Kansas City manufacturing index.According to the 2011 QLI, after falling to its lowest point in December 2008, the BCI began to improve throughout 2009 and 2010, peaking in January 2011 and declining through March the same year ñ which is the latest data available.Of the 10 measurements the BCI tracks, only two ñ the Kansas City manufacturing index and new car registrations ñ grew by more than 10 percent. El Paso County’s employment rate and foreclosures improved less than 2.5 percent. The remaining measurements were flat or declined.The QLI’s Wage Index shows that wages in El Paso County peaked to an all-time high in March 2008 and then fell to the lowest point two years later. By December 2010, wages had recovered slightly and started declining again.Government ñ federal, state and local ñ is the largest employer in the Colorado Springs area, employing 48,200 people. The number does not include the 30,000 military personnel in the area.According to the QLI, young professionals in the 25 to 44 age group continue to leave the Colorado Springs area for larger cities with greater employment opportunities.It states in the report that ìwithout job and career opportunities, we will not attract and retain the young talent we need to grow a vibrant economy.îWhile the local economy seems to be stagnating, the cost of living index for the Colorado Springs area has continued to fall every year since 2001. The index is based on housing, utilities, groceries, transportation, health care and miscellaneous goods and services.A high median income coupled with a low cost of living makes the Colorado Springs area more affordable than other similar cities in Colorado, including Boulder, Denver and Fort Collins.According to the reportís conclusion, ìIt appears that Colorado Springs and El Paso County have an even greater advantage to attract and retain businesses and their employees than ever before.îTo download a copy of the 2011 QLI, visit to the El Paso County Public Trustee’s Web site,, 3,474 foreclosures were initiated in 2011, compared to 4,678 in 2010.In the Falcon area’s 80831 ZIP code 174 foreclosures were initiated in 2011, compared to 255 in 2010.

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