Profile: Burnet County

Burnet County is a mid-sized  county in central Texas, with a population of 46,240 people and 13,740 jobs. The county’s population grew 9% from 2006-2016 and job base grew 15%.

The county’s population growth is primarily due to the migration of people into the county: in the last decade, 141% of new population was due to domestic migration (deaths outnumber births). Migration into the county peaked in 2006, then declined until 2010. Domestic migration has since rebounded to about 1,000 net new persons.

Burnet County has a relatively older population with a smaller concentration of families. According to the Census, 27% of Burnet County’s population are residents between 45 and 64 years of age (versus 26% for the U.S.) and 22% of county residents are 65 years or older (versus 14% for the U.S.). As a result, the county has lower concentrations of both children and young adults than the nation. Of the total population, 94% were born in the United States, with 6% born abroad.  Of the foreign-born population, 54% are not naturalized US citizens.

Burnet County’s population is 75% White, 22% Hispanic, and 2% Black. The three largest ancestral groups are German, English, and Irish.

According to the Census, 86% of Burnet County residents had at least a high school degree and only 23% had a Bachelor’s degree or higher. These educational attainment statistics are slightly lower than the U.S. average (87% high school, 30% Bachelor’s).

Burnet County’s median household income has remained slightly under national averages for the past decade, and was 95% of the US level in 2015.

The percent of overall population in poverty in Burnet County has been consistent with national trends over the past five years. Between 2005 and 2015 overall population in poverty in Burnet County rose from 11.4% to 13.2%. The percentage of children in poverty grew faster than the county as a whole, going from 20.0% in 2005 to 22.3% in 2015.

Burnet County’s economy has performed well over the past decade, creating new jobs every year except three. Burnet County weathered the recession moderately well, losing 560 jobs in 2009 but gaining jobs the following two years. In 2016 the county added 520 net new jobs.

The Burnet County unemployment rate has fallen from its recent high of 6.8% in 2010 to 3.5% in 2016. The county rate has been consistently lower than the U.S. rate.

The largest industries in Burnet County are:

• Trade, Transportation, and Utilities – 21% of county employment
• Government– 18%
• Health Services & Private Education– 15%
• Leisure and Hospitality – 14%
• Construction – 10%

Employment has grown over the past 5 years in all but three major industries in Burnet County. Professional and Business Services declined 19.1% from 2011-2016. Manufacturing decreased by 10.2%, and Financial Activities decreased by 8.4%. Significant growth occurred in Construction (+53%), Health Services and Private Education (+44%), and Natural Resources & Mining (+32%).

The average salary in Burnet County is 75% of the U.S. average and from 2011-2016 grew 12.5%, which was larger than the U.S. growth rate of 11.6%. The county’s fastest growing salaries are in Financial Activities, Manufacturing, and Construction. From 2011-2016, annual salaries declined slightly in Professional & Business Services and Other Services.

 

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