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Idaho's senior citizen numbers increase

Posted: 3:05 PM, Jul 10, 2018
Updated: 2018-07-10 21:05:34Z

The number of Idaho’s seniors –- people age 65 and older –- grew nearly eight percent from mid-2016 to mid-2017, the highest percentage of all age groups, Idaho Department of Labor officials said.

Overall, the state experienced a significant population increase of nearly 37,000 -- or 2.2 percent -- across all age groups for the same time period, according to estimates recently released by the U.S. Census Bureau.

“While the 2017 data shows Idaho’s senior group represented 33 percent of the total change in population -- or one out of three people -- all age groups experienced growth,” a Department news release stated.

“The 19-and-younger age group and the 40- to 64-year-old groups grew by 1.5 percent each, while the 20- to 39-year-old age group grew 2.3 percent. The only age group to show a decrease in the past seven years has been the 19-years-old or younger age group, both in 2011 and 2012,” the release said.

Idaho’s median age (at 36) was lower than the nation’s (at 38) as of the middle of last year. Twenty-nine of Idaho’s counties had a median age above the state’s median age. 

Adams County had the highest median age in the state -- at 55. Boise, Clearwater, Custer, Idaho and Lemhi counties, also has a median age older than 50. Madison County, home to BYU-Idaho, had the lowest median age in the state at 23 -- and Latah County, home to the University of Idaho, had the state’s second lowest median age at 29. 

Twenty-five of Idaho’s 44 counties had population increases in all four age groups. Nineteen counties experienced a loss in at least one age group. 

Clearwater and Power counties reported a decrease in three of the four age groups -- only the 65-years-and-over age group increased in both of those counties, officials said.