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County Snapshots

by Erik White
erik.white@state.mn.us
December 2017

Minnesota map showing Lincoln County

Past

Lincoln County, named to honor Abraham Lincoln, was established in 1873 in Southwestern Minnesota with Ivanhoe as the county seat, after some debate, since 1904. The Icelandic, Danish, and Norwegian people were the main settlers in the 1800s because they were more suited for the intense cold winter, farming methods, and weather variations. Agriculture and agribusiness has been the main industry for a century. Total farm revenue has increased from $77.3 million in 2000 to $216.7 million in 2013. The county has five incorporated cities and 15 townships.

Future

Lincoln County has lost 25% of its population since the 1970s, and we might see this trend continue. Education and Health Services jobs are likely to continue to decline because of population decreases. However, total construction jobs have increased 43%, and the wages for those jobs increased 84% since 2006. If the trend continues, total crop production will continue growing into the future.

Present Overview

The population of Lincoln County is 5,771, 80th of the 87 counties in Minnesota. The unemployment is similar to the state’s. The median household income is about 22% lower than the state, and the cost of living is 20% lower than the state. There is no notable industry or Manufacturing within the County.

Economy

Estimates

Lincoln County

Minnesota

Population 2015

5,771

5,576,606

Labor Force 2017

3,373

2,959,248

Average Unemployment

3.8%

3.3%

Median Household Income

$49,438

$63,217

Cost of Living, Individual

$25,355

$29,856

Cost of Living, Average Family

$44,156

$55,200

Source: DEED Local Area Unemployment Statistics, Cost of Living; U.S. Census Bureau, 2016 American Community Survey

 

Industry

Top Industries of Employment

Total 2016
Employment

Percent Change 2006-2016

Average
Annual Wages

Percent Change 2006-2016

Total, All Industries

1,710

-2.3%

$33,852

45.6%

1

Education and Health Services

554

-18.6%

$32,864

29.2%

2

Trade, Transportation, and Utilities

411

-1.2%

$35,880

60.1%

3

Construction

185

43.4%

$55,952

84.6%

4

Public Administration

124

-6.8%

$30,940

43.0%

Source: DEED Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages 2006-2015


Minnesota map showing Lyon County

Past

Lyon County, named for General Nathaniel Lyon who was killed in the Civil War, was established in 1868 in Southwestern Minnesota as the railroad lines were first built through the county. Marshall is the county seat. Lyon County’s employment over the century was mainly in farming. The population has been steady at 25,000 since 1970. The Education and Health Services jobs have seen the only major job increases in the last decade, all of that increase was in Health Services jobs. The Trade, Transportation, and Utilities, Manufacturing, and Professional and Business Services industries have all seen modest decreases in employment over the last decade.

Future

Education employment is likely to stay the same while the Healthcare and Social Assistance industry continues to increase in employment as the population ages. The long term trend in Manufacturing portends increasing wages and decreasing employment.

Present Overview

It is common for Education and Health Services to be the largest employer in a rural Minnesota county. However, it is less common for Manufacturing to be the #3 industry. Manufacturing is the third largest industry and pays wages 26% over the average family’s cost of living. The fourth largest employer Professional and Business Services is 32% above the average family’s cost of living. These both represent the best places to work based on wages.

Economy

2016 Estimates

Lyon County

Minnesota

Population

25,673

5,576,606

Labor Force

15,377

2,959,248

Average Unemployment

2.9%

3.3%

Median Household Income

$51,920

$63,217

Cost of Living, Individual

$23,588

$29,856

Cost of Living, Average Family

$41,259

$55,200

Source: DEED Local Area Unemployment Statistics, Cost of Living; U.S. Census Bureau, 2016 American Community Survey

 

Industry

Top Industries of Employment

Total 2016
Employment

Percent Change 2006-2016

Average
Annual Wages

Percent Change 2006-2016

Total, All Industries

14,590

-2.5%

$40,508

28.3%

1

Education and Health Services

3,623

18.8%

$40,612

40.2%

2

Trade, Transportation, and Utilities

3,013

-13.9%

$33,020

11.5%

3

Manufacturing

2,150

-4.2%

$51,168

48.6%

4

Professional and Business Services

1,456

-13.6%

$54,444

23.4%

Source: DEED Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages 2006-2015


Minnesota map showing Mahnomen County

Past

The White Earth Indian Reservation was created by an 1867 treaty. Mahnomen County was established in 1907, just after the railroad lines were built through Mahnomen city. Mahnomen is the Ojibwe word for wild rice, a major crop in the county. The reservation makes up the entirety of the Mahnomen County. The land has been rich in soil and timber. Bonanza farms, large farms mostly for wheat, were built in the early 1900s. The county is also noted for Red River Ox Carts used to move animal hides from the northwest part of the state to Saint Paul for shipping to the East Coast. The carts had no grease on the axel and could be heard for a considerable distance.

Future

The Gaming Industry is set to maintain its leading position as the largest employer and distributor of wages for Mahnomen County

Present Overview

The entire county is still within the White Earth Indian Reservation. Leisure and Hospitality make up the largest employer and total wages for the county. The Gambling Industries make up a large majority of that employment and total wages. Education and Health Services are a distance second in employment for the County. Public Administration, which is primarily tribal officials, pays the best wages.

Economy

2016 Estimates

Mahnomen County

Minnesota

Population

5,457

5,576,606

Labor Force

2,336

2,959,248

Average Unemployment

4.8%

3.3%

Median Household Income

$41,597

$63,217

Cost of Living, Individual

$25,724

$29,856

Cost of Living, Average Family

$44,458

$55,200

Source: DEED Local Area Unemployment Statistics, Cost of Living; U.S. Census Bureau, 2016 American Community Survey

 

Industry

Top Industries of Employment

Total 2016
Employment

Percent Change 2006-2016

Average
Annual Wages

Percent Change 2006-2016

Total, All Industries

1,935

-7.1%

$33,800

31.3%

1

Leisure and Hospitality

990

-7.2%

$29,380

28.4%

2

Education and Health Services

343

-7%

$40,300

32.3%

3

Trade, Transportation, and Utilities

256

-5.2%

$39,988

35.4%

4

Public Administration

143

7.5%

$47,929

61.4%

Source: DEED Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages 2006-2015



Minnesota map showing Marshall County

Past

Marshall County, named for William R. Marshall, fifth governor of Minnesota who also served in the Civil War as a Brigadier General, was established in 1879. There were few white settlements in this area until railroad lines were built in 1872 and 1873. The railroads brought a wave of immigration, and in about 10 years nearly all the land was taken by homestead and preemption claims. Capitalists bought land and created Bonanza farms of up to 40,000 acres to produce spring wheat to be transported to Minneapolis for milling.1 Agriculture has been the main industry since the 1800s. Since 1970 the population had decreased from approximately 13,000 people to less than 10,000.

Future

Manufacturing industry wages, if they follow the state trend, will continue to rise and the employment continue to decrease. It is also likely for employment in Educational Services to keep decreasing while the Healthcare and Social Services keeps increasing. This will continue if the population continues to decrease as the Baby Boomers get older.

Present Overview

It is common for rural counties to have Education and Health Services as the main industry and Public Administration in the top five industries. Trade, Transportation, and Utilities make up the bulk of the total wages. Agriculture and the agribusiness are still the base of the economy.

Economy

2016 Estimates

Marshall County

Minnesota

Population

9,423

5,576,606

Labor Force

5,811

2,959,248

Average Unemployment

8.4%

3.3%

Median Household Income

$56,340

$63,217

Cost of Living, Individual

$26,758

$29,856

Cost of Living, Average Family

$45,557

$55,200

Source: DEED Local Area Unemployment Statistics, Cost of Living; U.S. Census Bureau, 2016 American Community Survey

 

Industry

Top Industries of Employment

Total 2016
Employment

Percent Change 2006-2016

Average
Annual Wages

Percent Change 2006-2016

Total, All Industries

2,214

-5.3%

$40,352

45.9%

1

Education and Health Services

582

1.2%

$35,308

32.4%

2

Trade, Transportation, and Utilities

456

-16%

$48,100

69.1%

3

Public Administration

284

2.2%

$44,460

43.0%

4

Manufacturing

265

-24.1%

$41,236

26.9%

Source: DEED Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages 2006-2015

1 http://www.visitnwminnesota.com/Marshallhistory.htm

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