UPPER ANDROSCOGGIN VALLEY AREA PROFILE: BERLIN, GORHAM, MILAN, RANDOLPH, SHELBURNE

UPDATED TO REFLECT 2000 DATA

PRESENTED BY: THE FAMILY RESOURCE CENTER @ GORHAM THE ANDROSCOGGIN VALLEY COMMUNITY PARTNERS THE ANDROSCOGGIN VALLEY ECONOMIC RECOVERY CORP.

Upper Androscoggin Valley CommunitiesBerlin, Gorham, Milan Randolph and Shelburne
The towns of Gorham, Milan, Randolph and Shelburne and the City of Berlin that make up the Upper Androscoggin Valley are located in Coos County. Coos, the northern-most New Hampshire county, has the largest land area of all NH counties (1800 square miles), the smallest population (33,511) and the lowest per capita income ($28, 884 per person), according to 2000 census data. Berlin, with a population of just over 10,000-down from 30,000 in the 1950’s, is the only city in the county. The Valley has a rich history of multi-generational ethnic families working in the mills and forests. The region’s heritage, culture and identity are deeply rooted in stories of the forests, the Androscoggin River and the business of paper-making. Nevertheless, the actual numbers of those employed by the mills has been declining steadily since the 1950s. In May 2006 the pulp mill in Berlin owned by Fraser Papers closed permanently, leaving only a small paper operation still operating.

Coos County, New Hampshire

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Organizations Involved in Creating this Profile
The Family Resource Center @ Gorham The Family Resource Center @ Gorham is a private non-profit corporation that was established in April 1997. The Center is designed to bring a variety of health and human service programs together to work collaboratively with each other and the community. The Family Resource Center provided services, either directly or indirectly, to over 3,000 individuals in the Androscoggin Valley area in 2005 and it has taken a leadership role in community development activities since the fall of 2001 when the Berlin and Gorham mills declared bankruptcy, before being purchased by Fraser Papers in 2002. The Center operates with a community board of directors, a staff of 32 and a broad range of volunteers. The funding comes from a mix of state, federal and private foundation sources. Androscoggin Valley Community Partners The Androscoggin Valley Community Partners (AVCP) was formed from a merger of the Concerned Community Providers and the Berlin Area Health Consortium. The Concerned Community Providers (CCP) was created as a vehicle for communication and shared action among social service providers when the mills closed in 2001. When the mills reopened, the members of CCP shifted their focus to addressing the root causes of social issues in the region. CCP became a Task Force of the Androscoggin Valley Economic Development Corporation and helped to connect economic issues with health and social concerns. The Berlin Area Health Consortium (BAHC) was formed in the late 90’s by a consortium of healthcare providers to provide training, create technology for information sharing and build a unified voice for healthcare issues in the North Country These two groups merged in December 2005 and created a new shared mission which states “The Androscoggin Valley Community Partners will work to foster positive health and social outcomes to create thriving and vibrant communities in the region.” Androscoggin Valley Economic Recovery Corporation (AVER) The Androscoggin Valley Economic Recovery Corporation (AVER) was incorporated in October 2001 by area business people to address the closure of the mills and the clear need for economic diversification in the Androscoggin Valley. When Fraser Papers purchased the mills in 2002, AVER broadened the concept of economic development to include community development for the Androscoggin Valley region. To address this broader, regional agenda, AVER formed 5 community task forces: education, economic development, tourism, health and human services and technology. AVER’s mission is : “To promote and encourage the development of business and economic development activities, the creation and preservation of employment opportunities and the protection of the physical environment and the character of the communities in the region comprising the Androscoggin Valley.” AVER has 19 members on its Board of Directors from all towns in the region. The board is committed to creating a long term vision for change and new economic sustainability in the Valley.

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Acknowledgements
The research, writing and production of the Upper Androscoggin Area Profile were made possible with support from Jane’s Trust. Project oversight was provided by Catherine McDowell, Executive Director of the Family Resource Center at Gorham, The Carsey Institute of the University of New Hampshire, members of the Androscoggin Valley Economic Recovery Corporation (AVER) and members of the Androscoggin Valley Community Providers (AVCP). The writing and data analysis in this profile were done by Sarah Savage, a Ph.D. student in Sociology at the University of New Hampshire working for the Carsey Institute. Sally Ward, Professor of Sociology at UNH, provided insightful guidance and supervision for this project and Wendy Walsh, a Research Assistant Professor at UNH and author of the original Upper Androscoggin Valley Area Profile, also contributed useful feedback during the process. John Bonds from the NH Department of Health and Human Services reviewed the profile and provided valuable information and comments.

June 2006

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Table of Contents Introduction Profile Highlights Social Indicators Population by Town Population by Age Group Population Dependency Number of families Single Headed Households Number of Workers in Family Working Mothers 6 7 7 8 8 9 10-11 12 13 14 15 16 16 17 18 19 20 21 22-23 24 25 26 27-29 30-31 32 33 33 34 35 36 37 38-39 40 41 42 43 44 Community Indicators Crime rate Domestic Violence and Child Abuse Idle Teens High Risk Health Behaviors At Risk Births Teenage Mothers Health care Access Housing Property Values Housing Affordability School Assessment Education levels Post High School Education Economic Indicators Labor Force Participation Unemployment Rate Full and Part-time Work Seasonal Workers Employment Changes Average Weekly Wages Per Capita Income Median Family Income Poverty Rates Elderly Living in Poverty References 5 .

evidenced locally by the closure of the Fraser Papers pulp mill in Berlin in 2006. wherever possible. economic. The Androscoggin Valley Economic Recovery Corporation (AVER) and The Androscoggin Valley Community Partners (AVCP) have joined the Family Resource Center in commissioning in this new report so that community leaders and organizations can track progress and changes in these key indicators of community health.This new version of the profile compares. Health Care Access and Housing. The environmental indicators in the original have been dropped because there was no good source for comparative data. The social and economic platform of he Androscoggin Valley. The updated profile is designed to help the community understand the forces affecting the communities of the Androscoggin Valley. Develop social. quality of life and success for area children. Milan Randolph and Shelburne) for the period between 1980 and 1990. The 1998 Profile examined social. and indeed all of rural America is changing. Protect the physical environment. health and personal finance programs that support stability. We need a realistic planning process to create a sustainable future for those who will inherit this region from us. the cultural heritage and the unique character of the communities in the region. Create and preserve employment opportunities. and environmental indicators for the five towns (Berlin. .Introduction Why write a community profile? The following report is an update of the Upper Androscoggin Valley Area Profile that was originally produced in 1998. and the changing demographics of the Valley suggest that it is a good time to look closely at these trends as we design community and economic development strategies for the future of the Androscoggin Valley region. The updated Profile compares the 1990. the original data to data from the period between 1990 and 2000. youth and families. Understanding the realities that define the Androscoggin Valley region will offer a clear picture of the strengths and challenges that exist. which were not available at the printing of the original Profile. The declining prospects for the future of the pulp and paper industry in the US. community. It is our hope that leaders will use the data in this report to design realistic and strategic initiatives that will: • • • • • Promote and encourage new business and economic development appropriate for the region. It also examines new indicators for Population Dependency. Gorham. connect with industry and business needs and retain/attract younger workers. Support education and training programs that build new skills. The 1998 Profile provided a snapshot of what the towns in the Androscoggin Valley looked like from 1980 to 1990.2000 data with the 1980-1990 data so that we can track changes and examine the trends are influencing the social and economic direction of our communities.

and the gap appears to widen in the later part of the decade. Weekly wages and income (median family and per capita) were consistently lower in Coos than in the state throughout the nineties. the five town area had a lower percentage headed by married couples and a higher percentage headed by single females. relative to Coos and the state. Households defined as “families without children” decreased between 1980 and 2000. The percentage of elderly population in the five town area is consistently larger than in the state as a whole. particularly in Berlin and Gorham. whereas the percentage of households defined as “non-family” has increased over the two decades. In 2000. and the percentage headed by single females was smaller. By 2000. The percentage of full-time workers fluctuated inconsistently from 1980 to 2000 across the five towns. which shows a consistent increase. county. The percentage of families with children headed by married couples was larger in the five town area in 1980. stand out as having higher percentages of people without health insurance in 1999 and 2000 relative to the rest of the state. Milan was the only town within the five town area that experienced a positive percent change in population between 1990 and 2000. Coos. The percentage of idle teens has decreased substantially between 1990 and 2000. a smaller percentage of the population consisted of children across the five towns. The family structure changed more dramatically in the five town area between 1980 and 2000 than in Coos and the state as a whole. more generally. Conversely. 7 . The percentage of people living below poverty decreased consistently between 1980 and 2000. high school graduate was the most common education level attained in the five town area. In 1990 and 2000. in all towns except Berlin. relative to Coos and the state. The teen birth rate remained consistent in the late nineties and then demonstrated a noticeable decrease between 2001 and 2003 across Coos County.Profile Highlights The increase in New Hampshire’s overall population between 1990 and 2000 was more modest than the prior decade. in 2000. and state. and the state. the other four towns experienced negative percent changes. whereas the percentage of part-time workers increased consistently. this trend had reversed. Coos and the North Country.

SOCIAL INDICATORS Numbers of people in a community. Factbook on NH’s Counties and their Cities and Towns. which translates into larger percentage changes. the actual declines were larger than estimated. in the five town area experienced population declines from 1990 to 2000. in a small town like Shelburne it translates into a 14% decrease in total population. It is important to identify areas of growth or decline in the population because services and resources can be developed to respond to a changing population. All towns. Census. Population Change by Town Why is this important? Migration in or out of a community is one indicator of an area’s ability to offer an attractive quality of life and economic opportunities for individuals and families. It is important to understand the social indicators of the region in order to identify what resources. however. age groupings and family structure have implications for issues such as workforce availability. In most cases this may be a function of the smaller populations. construction/consolidation of schools. structures and economic supports will be needed in the future. A decrease of 59 people is not a lot. For instance. 8 . Percent Change in Population Shelburne Randolph Milan Area Gorham Berlin Coos County New Hampshire -20 -10 0 10 20 30 40 Percent 1980 to 1990 Estimated 1990 to 2000 Actual 1990 to 2000 Data Source: 1990 and 2000 U. How are we doing? Demographers’ projections that towns in the Androscoggin Valley would continue to decrease in size by 2000 were accurate. For Berlin and Gorham this was a continuation of the population declines that began in the 1980s. Shelburne’s population decreased from 437 in 1990 to 378 in 2000. health care services and day care needs. for each town and Coos County as a whole. however.S. except Milan. NH Office of State Planning.

2006). 2000 Area's Population by Age Group. New Hampshire's Population by Age Group. the five town area had a larger percentage of productive workers – ages 35 to 54 – than the state as a whole. The 35-54 year old age group represents the most productive worker age group (Gottlob. According to a report by PolEcon Research on fiscal and demographic trends in New Hampshire.Population by Age Group Why is this important? Population data can be used to make decisions about services which may be needed to support the growth of certain age groups. How are we doing? In 2000. such as more child care or school services for a growing population of children or healthcare services for an increasing number of elderly. 2000 55 plus 21% 0 to 4 6% 5 to 15 16% 16 to 19 6% 55 plus 28% 0 to 4 4% 5 to 15 14% 16 to 19 5% 20 to 34 13% 35 to 54 32% 20 to 34 19% 35 to 54 36% 9 . combined with the area’s growing elderly population suggest that there will be fewer workers in the “most productive” age group for Androscoggin Valley in the future. the shrinking percentage of youth (ages 16-19) and younger workforce (ages 20 to 34) from 1990 to 2000. Changes in the age distribution also impact the size of the labor force. 1990 55 plus 19% 0 to 4 8% 5 to 15 15% 16 to 19 6% 55 plus 25% 0 to 4 7% 5 to 15 16% 16 to 19 4% 35 to 54 26% 20 to 34 26% 35 to 54 28% 20 to 34 20% New Hampshire's Population by Age Group. However. 1990 Area's Population by Age Group.

A high dependency ratio means that the community’s dependent residents outnumber the workforce that supports them. ph Sh el bu rn e Co os Co un Ne ty w Ha m ps hi re Un ite d St at es 1990 2000 Be rli n G or ha m i la n M Ra nd ol 10 . When this happens it places a higher burden on the workforce to provide the necessary community supports and resources How are we doing? The dependency ratio was the highest in Berlin in both 1990 and 2000. Dependency Ratio* of Youths and Elderly to the Working Age Population 70 60 Dependency Ratio 50 40 30 20 10 0 *Dependency ratio = Number of population under age 15 plus number age 65 and over divided by the number of population ages 15 to 64 (Gottlob. Berlin and Gorham have experienced increases in their ratio of dependent persons to active working age persons. In the five town area.Population by Dependency Why is this important? Youth and the elderly population depend partly on the active workforce for support. 2006).

Percentage of Population who are Children 35 30 25 20 15 10 5 0 Percent ph Sh el bu rn e Be rli n or ha m ila n Ra nd ol G 1980 1990 2000 The noticeable decline in the percentage of working age adults in Berlin from 1990 to 2000 is being accompanied by an increase in the elderly population.The five town area. Percentage of Population who are Working Age Adults 64 Percent 60 56 52 48 ph Sh el bu rn e Be rli n ila n G or ha m Ra nd ol Co un ty M NH 1980 1990 2000 Percentage of Population who are Elderly 25 20 Percent 15 10 5 0 Be rli n ph Sh el bu rn e Co os Co os Co un ty M or ha m ila n Ra nd ol G 1980 1990 2000 Co os Co un ty M 11 NH NH . the county and the state all demonstrate a steadily increasing trend in the growth of the aging population and a decline in the population of children.

12 he lb ur ne Be rli n G or ha m M ila n .Number of Families Why is this important? Knowing how many families live in particular towns over time is one indicator of community growth. recreation departments or family support services.S. and 2000 U. was the one exception in the region. which experienced a decrease in the percentage of non-family households. There was also a steady increase in the percentage of “non-family households” which are defined as “…a householder living alone…or where the householder shares the home exclusively with people to whom he/she is not related” (U. Census)]. In 2000. Communities with young families may need larger schools. 1990. while communities with an elderly population may need more geriatric services and housing for the elderly. Census. this decrease was matched with an increase in the percentage of households defined as “families without children”. Understanding who is moving in or out of a community has implications for the types of resources might be needed. Households Defined as Families with Children 50 40 Percent 30 20 10 0 ph Sh el bu rn e Be rli n Co os i la n G or ha m Ra nd ol M NH C oo s N H 1980 1990 2000 Households Defined as Nonfamily 40 35 30 25 20 15 10 5 0 Percent ph Ra nd ol 1980 1990 S 2000 Data Source: 1980. How are we doing? Not surprisingly. Randolph. the decline in the proportion of the population of children from 1990 to 2000 was accompanied by a decrease in the percentage of households defined as “families with children” for this same decade.S.

How are we doing? In the five town area. the family structure continued to shift in 1990-200 from households with children headed by married couples and to an increasing percentage of households headed by single persons.9% 17.3% 79.Single Headed Households Why is this important? Single headed households tend to have fewer financial and social resources than two-parent households and the children are at increased risk of living in poverty.3% Types of Households Defined as Families with Children in Coos County 1980 1990 2000 2% 12% 4% 16% 10% 20% 86% 80% 70% Types of Households Defined as Families with Children in New Hampshire 1990 1980 2000 3% 13% 4% 13% 7% 17% 84% 83% 76% 13 .3% 11. Types of Households Defined as Families with Children in the Five-Town Area 1980 1.4% 21.8% 87.9% 1990 2000 2.4% 8.7% Male head of household Female head of household Married couples 69.

Number of Workers in Families Why is this important? The number of workers in families affects the social. How are we doing? With the exception of Berlin. they must find ways to juggle time between work and family. there is an increasing trend in families with two or more workers from 1980 through 2000. The fact that the increase in the percentage of families with multiple workers in Berlin is so slight from decade to decade may indicate a stable population of single headed households. and supervision of teens. availability of quality childcare. When families have more than one worker. economic. Choice of jobs may be limited by the other partner’s work schedule. and personal aspects of family life. Percentage of Families with Two or More Workers 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 R an do lp h G or ha m rn e B er lin M ila n C oo s S he lb u N H Percent 1980 1990 2000 14 . This trend may indicate increasing financial pressures that requires two workers to meet the financial needs of the family.

after school programs and support systems for families.Working Mothers Why is this important? An increase in working mothers could mean a need for increased childcare services. Percentage of Mothers with Child Under 6 Years Who Work 100 80 Percent 60 40 20 0 ph Sh el bu rn e Be rli n G or ha m Co os ila n 1980 Ra nd ol M 1990 2000 There was a less steady increase in the percentage of mothers with older children who worked across the decades. there is an increasing trend from 1990 to 2000 of mothers with children participating in the labor force. Percentage of Mothers with Child 6 to 17 Years Who Work 100 80 Percent 60 40 20 0 ph Sh el bu rn e Be rli n G or ha m Co os ila n 1980 Ra nd ol M 1990 2000 15 NH NH . The most notable increase in the percentage of mothers with children under age 6 who work was in Gorham. This is not surprising given the rise of single female headed households as well as the need for dual earners to make ends meet. How are we doing? With few exceptions.

When there is a low crime rate. safety and availability of housing stock and educational levels have implications for the overall well-being and achievement of a community and its members. The crime rate includes crimes like homicide. and theft.gov/dataonline.usdoj. and it often indicates a strong sense of community respect and pride. assault. and national level between 1990 and 1999. residents have a feeling of security in their community. How are we doing? There has been a consistently decreasing trend in the crime rate per one-thousand inhabitants at the county. In order to make progress. rape. Crime Rate per 1. teenage pregnancy. Indicators describing rates for crime and violence. larceny. access to health care. The total number of occurrences divided by the population determines the rate. state. health and education all contribute to a community’s success. Coos County shows evidence of a consistently lower crime rate than the state and nation over time. a community must recognize and actively address the role that these factors play in economic and community development. These indicators also significantly influence and support a community’s economic growth. burglary. Crime Rate Why is this important? Crime rate is one measure of community safety.000 Population 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 1990 1991 Coos 1992 1993 1994 1995 1999 New Hampshire United States Source: Bureau of Justice Statistics.COMMUNITY INDICATORS Safety. URL: http://bjsdata. 16 .ojp.

it should be noted that receipt of services is not representative of the total number of domestic violence cases as indicated above. among others. 2004 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 Neglect Physical Coos NH Sexual 17 . lack of appropriate and safe supervision and failure to provide health care. Since not all children at-risk are reported. Child abuse and neglect figures include only those children who have been reported to DCYF. However. this trend seems to be decreasing in more recent years. which includes situations such as consistent lack of adequate hygiene and nutrition. It is difficult to track the true number of individuals involved with domestic violence because only those who actually contact crisis centers are counted as victims. Child Abuse Assessm ents by Type of Abuse. we do not have an accurate count of all children who are truly at-risk.Domestic Violence and Child Abuse Why is this important? Tracking reported cases of domestic violence has implications for where crisis and support services for victims and families. a higher percentage of physical and sexual child abuse cases were reported in Coos than in the state as a whole. How are we doing? Despite the steady increase in services to victims of domestic violence between 1990 and 1996. Neglect. represented the majority of cases reported in Coos and the state in 2004. Number of Domestic Violence Victims Statewide who Received Services 10000 8000 6000 4000 2000 0 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 2003 2004 In 2004.

How are we doing? Since 1990.Idle Teens Why is this important? Teens between the ages of 16 and 19 who are not in school or working are considered “idle teens. 18 Ne w Ha m ps h M Co ir e m n . 1990 and 2000 20 16 12 8 4 0 Percent ol ph or ha rn e ila os lin Be r nd lb u G Sh e Ra 1990 2000 Source: Kids Count New Hampshire.” Teens that are not participating in school or work often experience a higher rate of crime. according to Kids Count data. The percentage of teens enrolled in school has increased across the five towns as well as at county and state levels between 1990 and 2000. Berlin. In the largest town. substance abuse and unwanted pregnancies. the percentage increase from 1990 to 2000 of teens enrolled in school was quite large. Teens aged 16 to 19 1990 572 136 72 13 27 1819 62619 Number (percent) not in school nor employed 1990 2000 106 (19%) 52 (10%) 18 (13) 13 (9) 6 (8) 0 0 0 0 0 251 (14) 146 (8) 4674 (7) 3333 (5) Number (percent) enrolled in school 1990 2000 413 (72%) 453 (85%) 97 (71) 116 (76) 56 (78) 55 (92) 8 (62) 23 (100) 23 (85) 28 (100) 1354 (74) 1410 (82) 49281 (79) 56712 (84) Area Berlin Gorham Milan Randolph Shelburne Coos NH 2000 536 152 60 23 28 1721 67668 Percentage of Idle Teens. The increase appears most dramatic in the smaller towns but this is mostly due to the small size of the population aged 16 to 19 in these areas. the percent of idle teens in the five town area has clearly decreased.

active and productive members of society. Source: UNH Cooperative Extension. grades 7-12. Community well being improves when teens are healthy. It is important to identify unhealthy behaviors and risk factors for teens so that communities can develop prevention and support programs that emphasize positive youth development and primary prevention strategies. conducted by the Coos County UNH Cooperative Extension and the Berlin/Gorham Community Youth Coalition. Percent of High School Students (Grades 9-12) Surveyed* Who Smoke Tobacco (monthly or more) 45% 40% 35% 30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0% Berlin Males Gorham Females Total NH Percent of High School Students (Grades 9-12) Surveyed* Who Use Alcohol or Marijuana 35% 30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0% Berlin Gorham NH Marijuana (monthly or more) Alcohol (once or more per w eek) *92% of students. and marijuana use than statewide reports. 19 . alcohol. How are we doing? Students surveyed in both Berlin and Gorham self-reported higher rates of cigarette smoking.High Risk Health Behaviors – Teens Why is this important? Unhealthy behaviors and risk factors decrease productivity and life expectancy for individuals in the community. from the Berlin School District in 2000 and the Gorham School District in 2001 were surveyed as part of a Teen Assessment Project.

20 . How are we doing? Mothers in Coos County experience higher rates of risk factors influencing infant health than mothers in the state as a whole.At Risk Births Why is this important? Research indicates that infant health at birth can be significantly impacted by factors such as smoking during pregnancy and the mother’s education. marital status and income level. The risk factor of poverty for mothers in Coos is especially high. Children born with these risk factors are more likely to read below grade level and drop out of school early. age. Over one-third of mothers in Coos are on Medicaid versus just over 20% at the state-level. Indicators of Infant Health (Age<1): 1993-1997 35% 30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0% Maternal Smoking Mother's Mother's Age Education < < 20 12 yrs Coos NH Mother Unmarried Medicaid Payment Source: New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services.

A teen mother faces above average risks in complications in pregnancy. while the teen birth rate at the state level has declined steadily. How are we doing? The teen birth rate in Coos County varies from year to year. 7 out of 10 teen mothers drop out of high school. Nationally. probably because of the small numbers involved. Teen Birth Rate per 1. 21 . Children born to teens are more likely to experience poor health. Except for 1998. poverty and school failure. the teen birth rate in Coos is consistently higher than the state rate.000 Females Age 15-17 18 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 1998 1999 2000 Coos 2001 New Hampshire 2002 2003 Source: New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services Health Statistics and Data Management.Teenage Mothers Why is this important? Teenage pregnancy poses a risk to both mother and child.

000 residents than the state level. although this gap appears to have narrowed somewhat in 2002. Coos has a consistently lower rate of physicians per 1. 2003-2004: American Medical Association. 2000 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 Coos All ages 18 and under NH From 1996 to 2002. fewer community members will have access to affordable health care. 22 . Coos County also has a lower percentage of physicians per population than the state. 2000. Physician Characteristics and Distribution in the US. 1999. Percent of Individuals Uninsured. Individuals who delay routine preventative health care visits or stop taking necessary medications because they do not have health insurance often end up going to the emergency room or needing hospitalization which puts the individual at higher risk and increases the cost of care for the community as a whole.Health Care Access Why is this important? Access to affordable health care is critical to the productivity of a community. How are we doing? Fewer individuals are covered by health insurance in Coos County than the state as a whole.5 2 1. Physicians: Rate per 1.5 1 0.5 0 1996 1997 1998 Coos 1999 2000 2001 2002 New Hampshire Source: 1997-1998.000 Population 2. 2001-2002. As health care costs continue to rise and full-time jobs offering health insurance decline in the five town area (see the Economic Indicators section).

Uninsured by Region. 1999 15 12 Percent 9 6 3 0 14 13 12 9 9 9 8 ou nt Ce ry nt ra lE as te Ce rn nt ra lW es te rn Ce nt ra l So ut hw es t St at ew id e Source: New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services.NH Department of Health and Human Services examined health insurance coverage by region in 1999. Employers of part time.” No rth 23 Se ac oa st C . which includes Coos County had the highest rate of uninsured in the state. Approximately 9% of New Hampshire residents were uninsured The “North Country” region. “Health Insurance Coverage and the Uninsured in New Hampshire: Results from the New Hampshire Health Insurance Coverage and Access Survey. low skill and retail workers tend not to offer health insurance coverage and or if they do. Office of Planning and Research. The survey results indicated that approximately 73% of uninsured families have a least one full-time worker in the household. the employee share may be cost prohibitive. which suggests that many employers are not offering health care coverage to their employees.

approaching 5% vacancy.0 6. income level and interests of who can or will live in a community. 24 .0 1. How are we doing? Berlin and Gorham stand out as having the highest percentage of vacancies across the five town area in both 1990 and 2000.0 4.0 0. an excess of older. the national trend also shows a decline in vacancies.0 5. The availability of affordable housing. While Rockingham and New Hampshire have witnessed dramatic decreases in vacancy rates between 1990 and 2000.Housing Why is this important? Housing supply plays a key role in whether families can find affordable places to live. Percent Housing Vacancies: 1990 and 2000 7. vacant housing or increased demand for real estate by affluent outsiders all have an effect on the age.0 3. A comparison of the vacancy trends in Coos to the more affluent county of Rockingham as well as to New Hampshire as a whole reflects the unique conditions in Coos. which is most likely influencing the overall trend in Coos County.0 2. Moreover. The high vacancy rates are driven in part by out-migration.0 or ha m ph Sh el bu rn e C oo s R oc ki ng ha m M i la n Be rl i n N H an do l U S G R 1990 2000 *Percent vacant excludes vacancies due to seasonal/recreational purposes. Coos has experienced an increase.

Declining property values also occurred at the state level. stores. property values are lowest in Berlin and Gorham and have been subject to substantial decline between 1990 and 2000. property values may rise making ownership and taxes more challenging for local people. The population decline between 1990 and 2000 in these two towns helps explain the decreasing property values. square footage and condition of a home and the real estate market as well as the aesthetics of the neighborhood and access to schools. the nation as a whole experienced a modest increase in property values. Median Value of Owner-occupied Housing Units (in 2000 dollars) 200000 160000 Dollars 120000 80000 40000 0 ha m h oo s e m H N n n ila rli ol p ur n gh a Be M U S G or an d el b C R Sh 1990 2000 oc k R in 25 . suggesting that factors outside of Coos are contributing to this trend on a more widespread level. However. How are we doing? Across the five town area. people from outside the community purchase real estate at higher values. can all influence property values. on the other hand.Property Values Why is this important? The age. If. recreation etc. When the initial investment in a property becomes a loss it can affect the individual home owner and the community as a whole if would-be home buyers and developers are deterred from investing.

One rule of thumb is that housing expenses should not exceed 25% of household income (NWAF). and property taxes. Median Gross Rent as Percent of Household Income 35.0 30.Housing Affordability Why is this important? Affordability of housing has implications for who stays. interest rates. not increasing property values. compared to other parts of the state.0 or ha m oo s oc ki ng ha m ph Sh el bu rn e M i la n Be rl i n H N an do l G R C 1990 2000 R 26 U S .0 10. How are we doing? Between 1990 and 2000 rent became slightly more affordable across the 5 town area. In Berlin rent remained above the 25% level of income even though it has become slightly more affordable since 1990. Comparing household income and expenses is a useful means for determining the affordability of housing. development initiatives. which stands out as having become less affordable.0 5. insurance. wages. This varies for renters and owners. whereas owners are responsible for mortgage payments.0 25. and utilities. If housing is not affordable.0 15. Renters’ expenses include rent and utilities. with the exception of Milan. property taxes. primarily because of the lower income levels.0 0. It is important to note that housing is a higher percentage of household income in Berlin. Factors that affect affordability include job availability.0 20. who leaves and who is attracted to an area. potential workers may not be able to live near the jobs that are available.

resource allocation and staffing. are performing at the basic or better level. Gorham has a significantly higher percentage of students performing at the advanced/proficient levels in math and English than Berlin and Milan (Milan School ends with 6th grade and students go to Berlin Junior High) and the state as a whole. however. The results of the tests produce individual student proficiency reports as well as reports at the school. district and state levels. professional development for teachers. The information is then used to make decisions about curriculum. instructional strategies.School Assessment Why is this important? The New Hampshire Educational Improvement and Assessment Program (NHEIAP) tests all NH public school third graders in English language arts and mathematics and all sixth and tenth grade students in English language arts. Average for the 1998-2004 School Years Berlin: Third Grade Gorham : Third Grade 50 40 30 20 10 0 English advanced/proficient basic Math novice 50 40 30 20 10 0 English advanced/proficient basic Math novice Milan: Third Grade 50 40 30 20 10 0 English Math 50 40 30 20 10 0 New Ham pshire: Third Grade English Math 27 . The tests create a standard for what New Hampshire students should know and be able to do in core-content areas. however. In the sixth and tenth grade assessments. science and social studies. Gorham and Milan. Berlin. How are we doing? A comparison of school assessments at the third grade level from 1998 to 2004 demonstrates that most students in Berlin and Gorham and in the state as a whole. mathematics. have a lower percentage of advanced/proficient students in both English and math than the state wide average. Third Grade Assessments.

while the area below indicates the “proficient” proportion.At the sixth grade level. however. Sixth Grade Assessments. 28 . Average for the 1998-2004 School Years Berlin: Sixth Grade 50 40 30 30 60 50 40 Gorham : Sixth Grade 20 10 0 English advanced/proficient basic M ath novice 20 10 0 English advanced/proficient basic M ath novice Milan: Sixth Grade 50 40 30 20 10 0 English Math New Hampshire: Sixth Grade 50 40 30 20 10 0 English Math Note: The area above the dashed line indicates the “advanced” proportion of the “advanced/proficient” category. Berlin also has a higher percentage of students at the novice level and a lower and a lower percentage of students at the proficient level than the state as whole. Berlin students scoring at the basic level equals in English and exceeds in math the state levels. Gorham has a higher percentage of students scoring in the advanced and proficient levels than Berlin and Milan and the state as a whole.

Berlin students meet the state average for proficiency in English and math. Source: NHEIAP. although Berlin continues to have a higher percentage of students at the basic levels in both areas than the state average.us/education/doe/organization/curriculum/Assessment/NHEIAP.nh.state. URL: http://www.At the tenth grade level. A higher percentage of tenth grade students in Gorham exceed the state average in both English and math.ht m. Tenth Grade Assessments. Average for the 1998-2004 School Years Berlin: Tenth Grade 50 40 30 20 10 0 English advanced/proficient basic Math novice Gorham : Tenth Grade New Ham pshire: Tenth Grade 50 40 30 20 10 0 English Math 50 40 30 20 10 0 English Math Note: The area above the dashed line indicates the “advanced” proportion of the “advanced/proficient” category. continuing the trend from the sixth grade assessments. while the area below indicates the “proficient” proportion.ed. 29 .

or higher. Educational Attainment. The percentage of those who have an educational level of less than a high school diploma has decreased in the 5 town area and across Coos County from 1990 to 2000.Educational Levels Why is this important? Educational attainment is an important measure of future income levels and employment opportunities.A. 2000 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% or ha m M i la n ph Sh el bu rn e Be rli n G R an do l Less than High School Some College High School Graduate B. High school graduate continues to be the highest educational level attained by most people in the 5 town area. except for Randolph and Shelburne which have significant levels of B. New businesses and industries are often attracted to communities with an educated workforce.A. or grad school N ew C oo s N 30 ew H ire . 37% of high school graduates in Coos County did not go on to higher education immediately after graduation. How are we doing? In 2003. 1990 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% lin n ha m h oo s e ila ol p Be r ur n am ps h hi re H am ps M G or an d Sh el b R C Educational Attainment.

Rank of NH counties educational attainment & income Source: May 18. The graph demonstrates the significant difference in educational attainment and income levels between Coos and the other counties in New Hampshire.University of New Hampshire 31 . WhittemoreSchool of Economics.Educational attainment affects income and economic performance across regions. 2001 Gittell.

Department of Program Support.0% 1999 2000 Berlin 2001 2002 Gorham 2003 Coos 2004 NH 2005 Percent Entering Less Than Four Year Post Secondary Education 45. civic engagement and earning potential. Higher educational attainment is closely associated with increased income.0% 45. 32 .0% 35.0% 1999 2000 Berlin 2001 2002 Gorham 2003 Coos 2004 NH 2005 Data Source: New Hampshire Department of Education.0% 55.Post High School Education Why is this important? Attending a post secondary school or college provides individuals with skills that increase employment opportunities.0% 40. however. How are we doing? From 1999 to 2005. It is important to note.0% 35.0% 50.0% 30. attending four year institutions has declined.0% 25. while Berlin and Coos County as a whole demonstrate consistently lower percentages of high school graduates attending four year colleges or universities.0% 40.0% 30. Percent Entering Four Year Colleges and Universities 60.0% 10.0% 5.0% 15.0% 0.0% 20. Gorham has had a high percentage of graduates attend four year colleges.0% 20. the percentage of high school graduates from Berlin attending other post secondary educational opportunities has increased significantly above the state average since 2001.0% 25. that although the percentage of high school graduates in Berlin and Coos.

Percent of Working Age Males Who Work 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 ph Sh el bu rn e Be rli n G or ha m Co os il a n 1980 Ra nd ol M 1990 2000 Percent of Working Age Females Who Work 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 rli n ha m M ila ur ne ol p oo s Be G or an d Sh R el b C N H n h NH 33 . How are we doing? The percentage of working age males who work has remained relatively consistent between 1980 and 2000 across the five town area. clothing. in Coos County and in New Hampshire as a whole. food. healthcare. Research consistently demonstrates that that family socioeconomic status has a direct impact on future outcomes for children. financially stable residents contribute both economically and socially to the community. childcare and recreation. When there is a high percentage of eligible workforce employed. it indicates that there is a balance between labor force skills and employment opportunities. thus improving the long-term growth and stability of the community as a whole. The percentage of working age females who work has increased steadily and consistently over the past two decades. Ultimately. Employment status is important because it tells us what percentage of those who are able to work are actually working.ECONOMIC INDICATORS What is the average income in our communities? What is the unemployment rate? When a community has a strong economic base residents have access to jobs that provide enough income to meet a family’s basic need for housing. Labor Force Participation Why is this important? Labor force participation indicates the percentage of persons 16 and over who are employed or in the armed forces.

Unemployment Rate Why is this important? Unemployment rates are defined as the percentage of adults in the labor force without employment during a given month. Significant on-going unemployment in a community can have a negative impact on community structure and services. Families that experience on-going unemployment are less likely to access healthcare and proper nutrition and more likely to have increased debt and family stress. although the rate has declined which has reduced the gap over time. Unemployment Rate 12% 10% 8% 6% 4% 2% 0% 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 Berlin Area Coos County New Hampshire 34 . How are we doing? Between 1991 and 1999. experienced higher unemployment rates than the state as a whole. the Berlin labor market area and Coos County as a whole.

Full and Part-Time Work Why is this important? Full time employment indicates that workers have access to a continuous source of income. Fulltime employment contributes to overall family and community stability because families are less likely to move and more inclined to invest in the community both financially and through civic engagement. manufacturing jobs. sometimes accompanied by health and retirement benefits. Most replacement jobs are in the service and retail industries which pay lower wages. which provided health care and pension plans. Percentage of Employed Workforce Who Work Full Time 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 Berlin Gorham Milan Randolph Shelburne 1990 2000 Coos NH 1980 Percentage of Employed Workforce Who Work Part Time 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 Berlin Gorham Milan Randolph Shelburne Coos NH 35 . How are we doing? It appears that the percentage of part-time workers has increased more steadily and consistently across the five towns and within Coos and the state as whole between 1980 and 2000. along with farming and logging are disappearing. In the 5 town area. Coos County and across rural New England. offer fewer benefits and are often part time or seasonal.

tend to pay lower wages. such as recreation and tourism and or other seasonal related businesses. have a stable income source for only part of the year and many rely on that income for their year round needs. How are we doing? Seasonal work has been declining steadily since 1980 (except for a small rise in Gorham). In addition. by definition. Percentage of Employed Workforce Who Worked Fulltime for 26 Weeks or Less 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 Berlin Gorham Milan Randolph Shelburne 1990 2000 Coos NH 1980 36 . seasonal employment.Seasonal Workers Why is this important? Seasonal workers are defined as those who work full time for 26 weeks or less. Seasonal workers.

0 20. fi s he ri e s rin cti o ri e Tr a in ti o r ta fi s he ac tu et ail ns uf fo re st. the percentage of workers in the agricultural and forest industries grew slightly in the five town area and across Coos.0 M in in C g on st ru ct M io W an n ho uf ac le sa tu ri n le /R g et ai lT Tr ra an de sp or ta tio n Fi na nc e ing de Ag . Diversification increases economic stability and makes economic growth less dependent on a single market. are not keeping pace with growth rates at the state-level.0 20.0 0. however.f or es t. Even though the growth was slight. Examining the percentage change in the number of people working in particular industries allows us to identify areas for future growth or decline.0 15. W ho Area Coos NH Area les ale Coos 37 Tr an Co an M /R sp o NH Fi na M tru nc e g s n n . How are we doing? Between 1990 and 2000.0 5. There was also a decrease in retail trade which may indicate reduced buying power of residents during this time period. the 5 town area and Coos in general.Employment Changes Why is this important? The numbers of people working in different types of industries indicates the type of employment opportunities that are available. it was notable because this type of industry is in general decline on a national level.0 10.0 5. The five town area experienced some growth in these industries between 1990 and 2000.0 Distribution of Employed Persons by Industry in 2000 25. The other notable changes occurred in the transportation/warehousing and finance industries.0 0. Ag .0 10.0 15. Distribution of Em ployed Persons by Industry in 1990 25. Manufacturing jobs in the region and NH declined slightly over the period and we anticipate a significant increase in this trend in the future.

the average weekly wages between 1991 and 2002 show little variation in Coos County. it means that wages are keeping up with the rate of inflation and employees are able to maintain their standard of living. When wages increase over time. wages for Coos remained consistently lower with a widening gap beginning in 1998. where wages hover around $500/week. How are we doing? After adjusting for inflation.Average Weekly Wages Why is this important? The average weekly wage per employee is one measure of job quality. Average Weekly Wages (2002 dollars) $800 $700 $600 $500 $400 $300 $200 $100 $0 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 Coos NH 38 . Average weekly wages at the state level increased slightly and steadily between 1993 and 2002. however.

One clear benefit of working in goods-producing industries is that workers are consistently paid more than those in service industries and also receive more aggressive wage increases over time. Gorham (2002 dollars) $800 $600 $400 $200 $0 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 GoodsProducing-Industries Service-Providing Industries 39 . Berlin (2002 dollars) $1. Average Weekly Wages.000 $800 $600 $400 $200 $0 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 GoodsProducing-Industries Service-Providing Industries Average Weekly Wages.

May 2001 Analysis: New Hampshire Office of State Planning. and positive health outcomes. Per Capita Income (1999 Dollars) $35. How are we doing? While the nineties show an upward trend in per capita income across the nation.000 $30.000 $25. High per capita income is associated with lower poverty rates. 40 .000 $20. in particular.000 $10. Low per capita income means that residents have less money to spend and therefore there is less economic activity in the region. higher educational levels. REIS CD Table CA1-3. per capita income is consistently higher for the state of New Hampshire versus the national figure.000 $0 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 Coos New Hampshire United States Source: US Department of Commerce.000 $15. but consistently lower in Coos County.000 $5.Per Capita Income Why is this important? Per capita income is one measure of overall standard of living and economic activity. Bureau of Economic Analysis. The gap between county and state levels has widened since the mid nineties.

US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Income Calculator. Median Family Income (1990 dollars) $50.000 $40. we can assess the overall wealth of a community. 41 C . 1990.Median Family Income Why is this important? Median family income is a measure of average family income. It divides the family income distribution into two parts where half of the population has lower incomes and half have higher incomes. except for Berlin which dropped slightly from 1990 to 1999 and Shelburne which experienced a large increase from 1990-1999.000 $20. By looking at both median family income and per capita income.000 $10. 2000. there has been a slight but consistent increase in median family income from 1990 to 1999.000 $0 Be rli n G or ha m M ila ur ne ol p oo s N H n h an d 1980 1990 Sh R el b 1999 Source: US Census 1980. How are we doing? Across the five town area.000 $30.

When a high percentage of people live in poverty. Milan and Randolph experienced a decrease in the percentage of persons below poverty between 1990 and 2000. many residents may not have access to well paying jobs. Poverty rates reflect an area’s overall economic strength. How are we doing? There has been a consistent increase in poverty levels in Berlin over multiple decades. the percentage of persons living below poverty appears to have increased in 2000 in Gorham. Percentage of Persons Living Below Poverty 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 G or ha m M ila ur ne ol p oo s rli Be N H n n h an d 1980 1990 Sh R el b 2000 42 C . In addition to Berlin. People living below the poverty level also require community support. Shelburne and the state as a whole. whereas in Coos it remained unchanged between 1990 and 2000.Poverty Rates Why is this important? Poverty rates are one measure of an area’s ability to create concrete economic opportunities for residents of all skill levels. which can put a financial burden on the community.

How are we doing? With the exception of Randolph.S. the percentage of elderly living in poverty is higher in the five town area than at the state-level. This information has implications for the need for services such as assistance with meals. Percentage of Elderly Living in Poverty 20 16 12 8 4 0 ph Sh el bu rn e Be rli n Co os or ha m ila n Ra nd ol M NH G 1980 1990 2000 Source: 1980 and 1990 U. health and housing. Census. 43 . there has been a modest decrease in the percentage from 1990 to 2000 in the five town area as well as at the county and state-level. For the most part.Elderly Living in Poverty Why is this important? Knowing how many elders live below the poverty level helps to identify the percentage of the elderly population that may need assistance.

Northwest Area Foundation Indicator Web Site.org/. “Leading Causes of Death for New Hampshire Residents. 2006. URL: http://www. Bureau of Economic Analysis.stats. 1990. 1980.nh. REIS CD Table CA1-3. U. U.us/education/doe/organization/curriculum/Assessment/NHEIAP. “Trend Lines NH: Economic.S.” NH DHHS Health Statistics and Data Management. URL: http://www. Bureau of Labor Statistics. 1998-2003. B.ed. Gottlob. Physician Characteristics and Distribution in the US. 1993-1997: Analyses of Primary Care Access Data at the Statewide and Hospital Service Area Levels. New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services. 1993-1997. Kids Count New Hampshire Online Data. Office of Planning and Research. Demographic and Policy Insights for NH. Fiscal.nh. UNH Cooperative Extension. Children’s Alliance of New Hampshire. "Primary Care Access Data Report Assessing New Hampshire's Communities Fourth Edition. NH DHHS. NH. NH. Uniform Crime Report Unit. 2000-2001. and 2000.References American Medical Association.ht m. New Hampshire Department of Education.state. May 2001 Analysis: New Hampshire Office of State Planning. 44 . Division of State Police.gov/oep/programs/DataCenter/Ecomomic/cppci99. Income Calculator. Division of Public Health Services Bureau of Disease Control and Health Statistics.gov/. URL: http://www. Concord. 1999-2001. National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention & Health Promotion. Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. Department of Safety.” NH DHHS." NHEIAP.” PolEcon Research. Census. U. New Hampshire Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence.indicators. Teen Assessment Project. URL: http://www. “Health Insurance Coverage and the Uninsured in New Hampshire: Results from the NH Health Insurance Coverage and Access Survey.S. 2003.J. Division of Standards and Certification.htm.S. Department of Commerce.bls.nwaf. Concord.