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Gulf Coast gains population

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  • | 4:45 p.m. April 20, 2011
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  • Charlotte–Lee–Collier
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It may be no big surprise that Charlotte County holds the title for the oldest median age of any county in Florida, but readers might not know that two Gulf Coast counties were among the biggest population gainers and one was the No. 2 loser based on the new 2010 Census data.

Buried in state economist Amy Baker's April 20 presentation to the House Redistricting Committee are these facts, as well as some predictions for 2030:

• The median age of Florida residents was estimated at 40.4 years as of April 1, 2009.

• There were eight counties with a median age of 50 and older including No. 1 Charlotte County (55.0) and No. 3 Sarasota County (53.2).

• Hillsborough County had the third-biggest population gain by a Florida county, growing by 230,278 from April 1, 2000 to April 1, 2010. Lee County was fifth, gaining 177,866. Orange County grew the most, adding 249,612.

• Pinellas County was the No. 2 population loser, dropping by 4,953, second to Monroe County, which lost 6,499. Pinellas County still retained its No. 1 status as the most dense county with 3,348 persons per square mile.

• Between 2009 and 2030, Florida's population is forecast to grow by almost 5.1 million.

• Florida's older population (age 60 and older) will account for most of Florida's population growth, representing 64.4% of the gains. Florida's younger population (age 0-17) will account for 13% of the gains.

• In 2000, Florida's prime working age population (ages 25-54) accounted for 41.5% of total population. With the aging baby boom generation, this percentage is estimated to have fallen to 39.4% in 2009 and by 2030 is projected to represent 34.1%.

• Population aged 65 and over is forecast to represent 26% in 2030, compared to 17.6% in 2000 and 17.5% in 2009.

• Florida's minority percentage of the population is 42.1% — New York is now at 41.7%, and the nation as a whole is at 36.3%.

• Based on the 2010 Census, Hispanics represent about 22.5% of Florida's population.

• Florida will become increasingly more Hispanic; Hispanics are forecast to represent more than 26% of Florida's population in 2030.


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