Spending of County Governments

Spending of County Governments

What does this measure?

The annual per capita spending by county governments, adjusted for inflation.

Why is this important?

Government provides critical services to communities, but the cost to taxpayers can be burdensome and can hinder efforts to attract and retain business.

How is our region doing?

The Berks County government spent just over $1,050 per resident in 2017, down from $1,090 in 2000. Spending by the county government peaked in 2002 at $1,600 per resident. County government spending across Pennsylvania has been consistently lower than Berks since 2000, and the statewide county government spending per resident was 26% lower than Berks in 2017.

Berks had higher spending per resident than all neighboring counties except Lehigh in 2017, and has substantially higher spending than Chester, Lancaster, Lebanon, Montgomery, and Schuylkill. At $680 per resident, Lancaster County had the lowest spending per resident in 2017.

Notes about the data

Figures are in constant 2018 dollars. Comparable national data are not available.

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Spending of County Governments
Berks County$1,089$1,141$1,595$1,444$1,452$1,070$1,206$1,055$1,197$1,023$1,019$991$1,078$1,053
Berks County Regions
Reading city
Berks County Peers
Chester County$938$1,221$1,091$1,244$1,099$1,106$1,068$1,063$958$879$844$827$810$815$839$830$839
Lancaster County$643$728$700$747$746$640$687$674$636$582$731$706$703$669$674$672$678
Lebanon County$572$537$547$554$749$789$749$814$791$776$760$700$677$706$797$789$825
Lehigh County$1,183$1,362$1,460$1,335$1,544$1,303$1,429$1,460$1,234$1,220$1,119$1,093$1,040$1,030$1,107$1,131
Montgomery County$787$911$850$822$856$886$895$884$857$809$782$722$703$737$693$691$794
Schuylkill County$821$1,007$1,173$1,116$1,092$867$936$863$800$675$722$600$619$709$706$716

Source: Pennsylvania Department of Community & Economic Development
Notes: Data not available for 2005. State level figures only represent the counties that reported data. Figures are in constant 2018 dollars.

Total Spending of County Governments
Berks County$406,807,765$430,635,014$608,194,924$557,055,434$567,608,423$433,717,858$491,868,763$435,523,840$494,858,467$423,642,379$422,422,514$411,272,286$448,344,965$439,835,189
Berks County Regions
Reading city
Berks County Peers
Chester County$406,554,834$538,686,240$488,649,316$566,303,041$508,792,434$529,750,838$519,263,539$522,369,680$475,240,954$438,647,056$425,093,498$418,302,618$412,563,349$417,927,822$432,351,949$428,849,363$435,593,917
Lancaster County$302,550,740$346,166,280$336,060,303$362,442,094$365,453,743$320,528,572$348,205,689$345,096,604$328,436,931$302,358,304$382,933,386$372,100,618$372,452,157$356,665,332$361,001,133$361,686,507$366,722,189
Lebanon County$68,803,817$64,962,518$66,532,956$68,250,722$93,366,730$101,254,020$97,521,391$107,053,842$105,222,824$103,641,045$102,150,229$94,896,486$91,875,518$96,452,440$109,629,028$109,215,515$115,077,677
Lehigh County$368,820,579$428,654,306$463,077,414$429,182,646$503,657,695$438,705,809$487,104,188$503,453,523$431,566,965$431,010,350$396,957,411$388,302,272$372,176,259$370,408,744$400,806,471$413,252,394
Montgomery County$590,020,854$691,668,964$650,791,812$634,855,552$664,764,013$692,177,636$703,043,118$697,990,931$681,625,997$646,968,310$629,326,294$583,953,109$571,077,076$601,496,324$566,590,852$566,884,597$654,559,791
Schuylkill County$123,316,043$150,235,244$174,500,297$165,006,391$160,624,148$128,361,985$138,979,570$128,015,424$118,567,794$99,613,584$106,150,009$87,936,064$90,008,631$102,162,153$101,331,182$102,169,971

Source: Pennsylvania Department of Community & Economic Development
Notes: Data not available for 2005. State level figures only represent the counties that reported data. Figures are in constant 2018 dollars.

Adults Who are Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Students in K-6 Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Students in 7-12 Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Physically Inactive Adults Not Applicable
Students Eligible for Free/Reduced Price Lunch Increasing
Early Prenatal Care Increasing
Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families Increasing
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Disengaged Youth Decreasing
Live Births to Teen Mothers Decreasing
Population by Age Not Applicable
Children with Elevated Blood Lead Levels Maintaining
Change in Population by Age and Gender Not Applicable
Change in Total Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Households by type Not Applicable
Foreign-Born Population Increasing
Seniors Living Alone Maintaining
Language Diversity Increasing
Unemployment Rate Increasing
Change in Labor Force Decreasing
Employment to Population ratio Decreasing
Change in Jobs by Sector Not Applicable
Sector Share of Total Jobs Not Applicable
Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
Change in Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
People Entering/Leaving County/Region for Work Not Applicable
Public Assistance Maintaining
Spending for Local Governments Maintaining
Spending for Counties Maintaining
Spending for School Districts Maintaining
Prekindergarten Participation Increasing
English Language Learners Increasing
Students Receiving Special Education Services Increasing
Per Student Spending Maintaining
High School Cohort Graduation Rate Increasing
Education Levels of Adults Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Brain Drain/Gain Maintaining
Plans of High School Graduates Not Applicable
Enrollment in Local Colleges Decreasing
Median Household Income Maintaining
Median Household Income by Household Type Not Applicable
Living Wage Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Increasing
Working Poor Maintaining
People Receiving Federal Food Assistance Increasing
People Receiving Supplemental Security Income Increasing
Health Status Not Applicable
People Enrolled in Medicaid Managed Care Increasing
People Without Health Insurance Decreasing
Cancer Incidence Decreasing
Prevalence of Mental Illness Maintaining
Vacant Housing Units Increasing
Homeownership Rates Decreasing
Cost of Homeownership Maintaining
Cost of Homeownership, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Rent Increasing
Cost of Rent, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Family Home Sales Increasing
Median Single-Family Home Sale Price Maintaining
Tourism Spending Maintaining
Voter Registration Rate Decreasing
Voter Participation Rate Decreasing
Average Charitable Giving Maintaining
Contributions as a Percentage of Income Maintaining
Households With Internet Access Not Applicable
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Establishments Maintaining
Toxic Chemical Releases Decreasing
Violent Crimes Maintaining
Property Crimes Decreasing
Incarceration Rates Maintaining
Drug Abuse Offenses Increasing
Drug Abuse Arrests Increasing
Protection from Domestic Abuse Maintaining
Average Travel Time to Work Increasing
Crashes Involving Alcohol Decreasing
Households Without Vehicles Decreasing