Santa Cruz County, California

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Santa Cruz County, California
County
County of Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz, California - Boardwalk.jpg
Bigbasinredwoods.jpg Roaring Camp Shay1 04.jpg
DowntownWatsonville.JPG Davenportbeach.jpg
Images, from top down, left to right: The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk in 2005, a walkway through Redwood groves in Big Basin Redwoods State Park, the Roaring Camp and Big Trees Narrow Gauge Railroad, Downtown Watsonville, Davenport Beach
Flag of Santa Cruz County, California
Flag
Official seal of Santa Cruz County, California
Seal
Location in the state of California
Location in the state of California
California's location in the United States
California's location in the United States
Country  United States of America
State  California
Regions Northern California, Central California, San Francisco Bay Area Combined Statistical Area
Incorporated February 18, 1850[1]
County seat Santa Cruz
Largest city Santa Cruz
Area
 • Total 1,572.5 km2 (607.16 sq mi)
 • Land 1,153.2 km2 (445.24 sq mi)
 • Water 419.4 km2 (161.92 sq mi)
Population (2010) 262,382
 • Density 227.5/km2 (589.3/sq mi)
Time zone Pacific Standard Time (UTC-8)
 • Summer (DST) Pacific Daylight Time (UTC-7)
Website www.co.santa-cruz.ca.us

Santa Cruz County, officially the County of Santa Cruz, is a county located on the Pacific coast of the U.S. state of California, on the California Central Coast. The county forms the northern coast of the Monterey Bay, with Monterey County forming the southern coast. As of the 2010 United States Census, its population was 262,382. The county seat is Santa Cruz. Santa Cruz County is a member of the regional governmental agency Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments and is one of 11 counties in the U.S. Census Bureau's definition of the San Francisco Bay Area Combined Statistical Area.

History[edit]

Santa Cruz County was one of the original counties of California, created in 1850 at the time of statehood. In the original act, the county was given the name of "Branciforte" after the Spanish pueblo founded there in 1797. A major watercourse in the county, Branciforte Creek, still bears this name. Less than two months later on April 5, 1850,[2] the name was changed to "Santa Cruz" ("Holy Cross").

Mission Santa Cruz, established in 1791 and completed in 1794, was destroyed by an earthquake in 1857, but a smaller-scale replica was erected in 1931.

Geography[edit]

According to the 2011 census, the county has a total area of 445.17 miles.[3] Of California's counties, only San Francisco is physically smaller.

The county is a strip about 10 miles (16 km) wide between the coast and the crest of the Santa Cruz Mountains at the northern end of the Monterey Bay. It can be divided roughly into four regions: the rugged "north coast"; the urban City of Santa Cruz, Soquel, Capitola, and Aptos; mountainous Bonny Doon, San Lorenzo River Valley; and the fertile "south county", including Watsonville and Corralitos. Agriculture is concentrated in the coastal lowlands of the county's northern and southern ends. Most of the coastline is flanked by cliffs.

Cities and towns[edit]

Counties and bodies of water adjacent to Santa Cruz County, California

Transportation infrastructure[edit]

Major highways[edit]

County routes[edit]

Public transportation[edit]

Santa Cruz County is served by the Santa Cruz Metropolitan Transit District bus system. A "Highway 17 Express" bus between Santa Cruz and San Jose is jointly operated by the SCMTD and the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority. Greyhound Lines bus service also serves Santa Cruz County.

Airports[edit]

Watsonville Municipal Airport is a public general aviation airport. There are two air carriers based at the airport offering on-demand air charter:

  • AirMonterey, LLC[4] (Corporate Aircraft)
  • Specialized Helicopters, LLC[5] (Helicopters)

There is a notable private airport, Monterey Bay Academy Airport, which is a former military base.

The nearest airports for scheduled commercial travel include San Jose International Airport, Monterey Regional Airport, San Francisco International Airport, and Oakland International Airport.

Crime[edit]

The following table includes the number of incidents reported and the rate per 1,000 persons for each type of offense.

Cities by population and crime rates[edit]

Demographics[edit]

2011[edit]

Places by population, race, and income[edit]

2010[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1850 643
1860 4,944 668.9%
1870 8,743 76.8%
1880 12,802 46.4%
1890 19,270 50.5%
1900 21,512 11.6%
1910 26,140 21.5%
1920 26,269 0.5%
1930 37,433 42.5%
1940 45,057 20.4%
1950 66,534 47.7%
1960 84,219 26.6%
1970 123,790 47.0%
1980 188,141 52.0%
1990 229,734 22.1%
2000 255,602 11.3%
2010 262,382 2.7%
Est. 2012 266,776 1.7%
U.S. Decennial Census[15]
2012 Estimate[16]

The 2010 United States Census reported that Santa Cruz County had a population of 262,382. The racial makeup of Santa Cruz County was 190,208 (72.5%) White, 2,766 (1.1%) African American, 2,253 (0.9%) Native American, 11,112 (4.2%) Asian, 349 (0.1%) Pacific Islander, 43,376 (16.5%) from other races, and 12,318 (4.7%) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 84,092 persons (32.0%).[17]

2000[edit]

As of the census[18] of 2000, there were 255,602 people, 91,139 households, and 57,144 families residing in the county. The population density was 574 people per square mile (222/km²). There were 98,873 housing units at an average density of 222 per square mile (86/km²).

There were 91,139 households out of which 31.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.0% were married couples living together, 10.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.3% were non-families. 25.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.71 and the average family size was 3.25.

In the county, the population was spread out with 23.8% under the age of 18, 11.9% from 18 to 24, 30.8% from 25 to 44, 23.5% from 45 to 64, and 10.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 99.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.8 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $53,998, and the median income for a family was $61,941. Males had a median income of $46,291 versus $33,514 for females. The per capita income for the county was $26,396. About 6.7% of families and 11.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 12.50% of those under age 18 and 6.30% of those age 65 or over.

Santa Cruz county residents tend to be well-educated. 38.3% of residents age 25 and older hold a bachelor's degree at least, significantly higher than the national average of 27.2% and the state average of 29.5%.[19][20]

Environmental features[edit]

Santa Cruz County is home to the following endangered species:[21]

Año Nuevo State Marine Conservation Area, Greyhound Rock State Marine Conservation Area and Natural Bridges State Marine Reserve are marine protected areas off the coast of Santa Cruz County. Like underwater parks, these marine protected areas help conserve ocean wildlife and marine ecosystems.

Colleges and universities[edit]

Four-year universities:

Two-year colleges:

Politics[edit]

Voter registration statistics[edit]

Cities by population and voter registration[edit]

Overview[edit]

Santa Cruz County vote
by party in presidential elections
Year GOP DEM Others
2012 20.0% 24,047 75.6% 90,805 4.4% 5,243
2008 19.9% 25,244 77.5% 98,745 2.9% 3,747
2004 24.9% 30,354 73.0% 89,102 2.2% 2,628
2000 27.3% 29,627 61.5% 66,618 11.2% 12,105
1996 26.9% 27,766 56.5% 58,250 16.5% 17,046
1992 21.9% 24,916 58.1% 66,183 20.1% 22,893
1988 36.8% 37,728 61.5% 63,133 1.7% 1,750
1984 45.2% 41,652 53.3% 49,091 1.5% 1,404
1980 43.5% 37,347 37.7% 32,346 18.8% 16,111
1976 43.1% 31,872 51.1% 37,772 5.9% 4,325
1972 49.9% 34,799 46.4% 32,336 3.8% 2,624
1968 50.8% 25,365 41.0% 20,492 8.2% 4,087
1964 41.3% 18,836 58.5% 26,714 0.2% 94
1960 59.6% 24,858 40.0% 16,659 0.5% 187
1956 63.6% 22,109 36.2% 12,574 0.3% 93
1952 67.1% 24,353 31.8% 11,536 1.1% 391
1948 57.7% 15,395 37.0% 9,862 5.4% 1,433
1944 53.8% 11,102 45.3% 9,357 0.9% 178
1940 50.9% 11,453 47.5% 10,683 1.6% 350
1936 46.1% 8,260 52.1% 9,326 1.8% 322
1932 40.1% 6,005 55.0% 8,246 4.9% 739
1928 68.5% 8,275 30.5% 3,688 0.9% 112
1924 60.8% 5,402 9.0% 801 30.1% 2,676
1920 66.3% 5,285 24.5% 1,957 9.2% 732

Santa Cruz County was a Republican stronghold for most of the 20th century; from 1920 to 1972 the only Democrats to carry Santa Cruz were Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932 and 1936 and Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964. But the opening of UCSC in 1965 caused the county's political landscape to dramatically change. Today, it is a strongly Democratic county in presidential and congressional elections. The last Republican to carry the county was Ronald Reagan in 1980, and the last Republican to win a majority in the county was Richard Nixon in 1968. The last Republican to represent a significant portion of Santa Cruz in Congress was Burt L. Talcott, who was defeated in 1976 by Leon Panetta.[24]

Santa Cruz County is split between California's 18th and 20th congressional districts, represented by Anna Eshoo (DAtherton) and Sam Farr (DCarmel), respectively.[25]

In the State Assembly Santa Cruz is in the 27th and 28th Assembly districts, which are held by Democrats Bill Monning and Anna Caballero, respectively. In the State Senate, Santa Cruz is part of the 11th and 15th districts, which are held by Democrat Joe Simitian and Republican Sam Blakeslee as of the 17 August 2010 special runoff election, respectively.

In 2008, 71.4% of voters in Santa Cruz County voted against Proposition 8, which amended the California Constitution to ban same-gender marriages.

Economy[edit]

Top employers[edit]

According to the County's 2010 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report,[26] the top employers in the county are:

# Employer # of Employees
1 University of California, Santa Cruz 1,000-4,999
2 Pajaro Valley Unified School District 1,000-4,999
3 County of Santa Cruz 1,000-4,999
4 Dominican Hospital 1,000-4,999
5 Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk 1,000-4,999
6 Cabrillo College 500-999
7 Santa Cruz City School District 500-999
8 City of Santa Cruz 500-999
9 Seagate Technology 500-999
10 Watsonville Community Hospital 500-999
11 West Marine 500-999
12 Plantronics 500-999

Winemaking and wineries[edit]

Vineyard in the Santa Cruz Mountains

Winemaking—both the growing of the grapes and their vinting—is an important part of the economic and cultural life of Santa Cruz County. The wines of the David Bruce Winery and Ridge Vineyards were selected for tasting in the Paris Wine Tasting of 1976 (Tabor, p.167-169).

See also[edit]

Sources[edit]

  • Taber, George M. Judgment of Paris: California vs. France and the historic 1976 Paris Tasting that Revolutionized Wine. NY: Scribner, 2005.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Only larceny-theft cases involving property over $400 in value are reported as property crimes.
  2. ^ Other = Some other race + Two or more races
  3. ^ Native American = Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander + American Indian or Alaska Native
  4. ^ a b Percentage of registered voters with respect to total population. Percentages of party members with respect to registered voters follow.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Chronology". California Counties. California State Association of Counties. Retrieved 2012-05-14. 
  2. ^ "California: Consolidated Chronology of State and County Boundaries". The Newberry Library. 2003. Retrieved 2012-05-15. 
  3. ^ "Santa Cruz County QuickFacts". United States Census. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  4. ^ flyairmonterey.com
  5. ^ specializedheli.com
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B02001. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-26.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Office of the Attorney General, Department of Justice, State of California. Table 11: Crimes – 2009. Retrieved 2013-11-14.
  8. ^ a b c United States Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation. Crime in the United States, 2012, Table 8 (California). Retrieved 2013-11-14.
  9. ^ a b U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B03003. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-26.
  10. ^ a b U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B19301. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  11. ^ a b U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B19013. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  12. ^ a b U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B19113. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  13. ^ a b U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  14. ^ U.S. Census Bureau. American Community Survey, 2011 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, Table B01003. American FactFinder. Retrieved 2013-10-21.
  15. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". Census.gov. Retrieved July 9, 2013. 
  16. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Census.gov. Retrieved July 9, 2013. 
  17. ^ "2010 Census P.L. 94-171 Summary File Data". United States Census Bureau. 
  18. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  19. ^ Bookwalter, Genevieve (August 15, 2006). "Santa Cruz residents more educated than most". Santa Cruz Sentinel. Retrieved 2008-02-06 [dead link]
  20. ^ "Santa Cruz County QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau". January 2, 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-22 
  21. ^ santacruzpl.org
  22. ^ McCord, Shanna (June 14, 2011). "Bethany University will close: Private funding didn't materialize". Santa Cruz Sentinel. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  23. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q California Secretary of State. February 10, 2013 - Report of Registration. Retrieved 2013-10-31.
  24. ^ "Santa Cruz County Election Results, November 2004 (pdf)" (PDF). Retrieved 2006-05-04. 
  25. ^ "California's 18th Congressional District - Representatives & District Map". Civic Impulse, LLC. Retrieved March 13, 2013. 
  26. ^ County of Santa Cruz CAFR

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 37°02′N 122°01′W / 37.03°N 122.01°W / 37.03; -122.01