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Jackson County Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service

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Oklahoma communities have been concerned with all aspects of economic development for the past several years.    Creating new jobs and additional income is of concern to rural communities and urban areas alike.   Often, retailing is viewed as a "service" sector dependent on the "basic" sectors such as oil, manufacturing, and agriculture.   Export sectors produce goods and services sold outside the local or regional economy.   Service sectors tend to circulate existing local dollars rather than attracting "new" outside dollars.   The retail sector is important, though, as retail activity reflects the general health of a local economy.   Retail sales also produce sales tax dollars which support municipal service provision.   Many local communities are promoting a "shop at home" campaign to keep local retail dollars in the community.   It will not be possible to stop all out-of-town spending or sales leakage’s for a local economy.   Opportunities for improvement do frequently exist, however.   Jackson County is involved in the Initiative for Rural Oklahoma leadership program, and Eldorado, Olustee, Blair, and Altus are the four communities in the county that collect a city sales tax.   The information in this study may help these communities identify key areas for improvement.   Specifically, the objectives of this study are:

1.     Utilize reported sales tax data to analyze trends in the county and area,

  • Provide estimates of trade area capture and market attraction.
  • Provide estimates of market attraction, broken out by SIC code.

A Summary of Economic Conditions in JacksonCounty, Oklahoma

The economy of Jackson County is based primarily on government and government enterprises . However, services and retail trade also serve an important role in the economy of Jackson County .   This report is designed to provide an overview of the economic conditions of Jackson County.   Specifically, trends in population, employment, income, and retail sales will be examined. No recommendations will be made regarding the findings of this report.

General Demographic and Population Data

According to the U.S. Bureau of the Census, the population of Jackson County decreased 1.1 percent from 1990 to 2000. The population of Jackson County in 2000 was 28,439; of these persons, 24,424 were living in cities or towns and 4,015 were living in rural areas. From 1990 to 2000, the percentage of rural residents in the county has increased by 4.1 percent (Table 1).   Total population for Jackson County was estimated at 27,661 in 2001.   Table 2 shows the average size of household in Jackson County and its cities and towns.   In 2000, Jackson County averaged 2.61 persons per household.

Table 3 reports school enrollment and educational attainment data for Jackson County .   Jackson County had 6,962 students in elementary, high school, college, and graduate school in 2000.   Of all residents of the county who were 25 years and over, 79.1 percent had attained a high school level of education or higher, while 18.5 percent had attained a Bachelor’s degree or higher.

Figure 1 shows the population growth in Jackson County for residents age 65 and over and residents under age 19 from 1980 to 2000.   During this time period, the number of residents age 65 and over increased by 0.3 percent while the number of residents under age 19 decreased by 12.7 percent.   From 1990 to 2000, the number of older residents decreased by 2.3 percent and the younger population decreased by 1.3 percent.

            From 1980 to 2000, Jackson County's older population peaked at 3,640 in 1984 and was at it lowest in 1999 with 3,308 residents age 65 and over.   The younger population peaked at 10,028 in 1980 and 1983 and was at it lowest in 2000 with 8,755 residents under age 19.

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