Piatt County Profile

Economic Characteristics

Economics Summary lists basic economic characteristics for Piatt County as well as for Champaign, Ford, and Iroquois counties. Piatt County, with a population of 16,500, is the third most populated county in the workforce investment area. The median household income of $69,200 is 31 percent higher than that of the region and 17 percent higher than the state median.

In 2017, there were 4,186 jobs in Piatt County, accounting for approximately 3.5 percent of the total number of jobs in the region. Piatt County has the smallest land area in the workforce investment region. The Gross Regional Product (GRP) of Piatt County was roughly 390 million dollars in 2017.

Population Characteristics

Compared with state and national medians, Piatt County has comparatively high median household and family incomes. The differences are especially significant when comparing Piatt County to national income levels. Household income is the sum of income of all people over 15 years living in a household, including related family members and unrelated individuals. Family income is the income of all family members 15 and over. Families are groups of two or more individuals related by birth, marriage, or adoption that reside together.

The population pyramid illustrates the population distributed by sex and age group. A large share of the population is between 45 and 64 years old, while the population between 20 and 44 years old is much smaller. The ratio between males and females is relatively uniform, with the exception of those over 75 years of age.

The population trend depicts that, since 2010, Piatt County has seen a slight overall decline in its total population, from 16,729 in 2010 to 16,445 in 2017.

A large majority of the population (97.5%) is white, as shown in Race Breakdown in Piatt County 2017. The second largest race group is Other, which includes American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islander, Some Other Race, and Two or More Races. This group together makes up approximately 1.4 percent of the Piatt County population, while 0.7 percent of the population identifies as African American. The Asian share of the population is small, with 68 individuals residing in the county in 2017, making up 0.4 percent of the population. Overall, 211 (7%) of the population in Piatt County is of Hispanic origin.

Education Characteristics

In terms of education attainment, forty percent of the county’s individuals 25 years and over have a high school diploma or less as their highest level of educational attainment. Sixty percent of the population in Piatt County has at least some college experience, and 28 percent has a bachelor’s degree or higher.

Within Piatt County, there are large differences in educational attainment between races. Within the white population, 38 percent have completed a college degree, while 62 percent have a high school diploma or less.

Among the American Indian/Alaska Native population, a majority have a high school diploma as their highest educational attainment. Fifty-one percent of the African American population have a college degree, compared to 54 percent of the Asian population and 42 percent of the Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander population and individuals identifying as two or more races.

Employment Characteristics

Seventy-two percent of employed individuals in Piatt County work for a private employer. This can be compared to 79.8 percent in the United States and 83 percent in Illinois, respectively. Piatt County has a larger share of government workers and self-employed individuals compared to U.S. and state averages.

For share of jobs by occupation category, Piatt County exceeds state and national levels with its high share of workers in the natural resources, construction, and maintenance sectors. The service, sales and office sectors are slightly smaller than state and national levels.

Looking at the share of jobs by industry category, educational services and health care and social assistance jobs employ around 25 percent of Piatt County workers, slightly higher than U.S. and state averages. Agriculture and construction jobs are also more common in Piatt County than at the state level or nationally. However, there is a smaller share of jobs in the professional, scientific, and management, and administrative and waste management services industries in the county compared to Illinois and U.S. averages.

Unemployment Characteristics

Between 2008 and 2017, the unemployment rate in Piatt County has been lower than both state and national averages. The Piatt County labor market experienced a peak in the unemployment rate at 7.8 percent in 2010, just after the economic recession. Since then, it has declined to 3.4 percent in 2017.

Shown in the comparison of unemployment rate by age. Piatt County has lower unemployment rates among many age groups compared to state and national levels. In Piatt County, individuals 16 to 19 years of age have the highest unemployment rates, while the lowest levels of unemployment are observed among individuals 30 to 34 years of age. This part of the population has a much lower unemployment rate than the state average.

Unemployment rates tend to decrease with higher educational attainment. The Piatt County unemployment rates by educational attainment are similar to those of the state and nation, but with a lower unemployment rate among the working-age population overall. The exception is seen among the part of the population with less than a high school degree, where the unemployment rate is higher compared to state and national averages.

Employment rate by other characteristics is also compared. Among individuals with a disability or those living below the poverty level, the county-level unemployment rates are lower than unemployment rates of the rest of the state and nation, as depicted in Table 11. At county, state, and national levels, the unemployment rate is more than twice as high among those living below the poverty level compared to the total population. Among the population with a disability, the unemployment rate in Piatt County is approximately 9.4 percent, which is significantly higher than the unemployment rate for the total population over 16 years of age.

Commuting Characteristics

County-level commuting characteristics within the region are summarized for both workers and residents. In 2015, 8,050 Piatt County residents were employed, while the total number of employed individuals working in the county was 3,257. Piatt County has a higher number of employees working outside the county than the number of employed individuals living in the county. Most of the county’s residents work in another county, while 21 percent both reside and work in Piatt County.

Industry Characteristics

Largest Industries by Number of Jobs, Piatt County 2017 summarized the largest industries in Piatt County based on 2-digit NAICS codes. Government jobs employ the most individuals within the county, even though the number of jobs has decreased between 2007 and 2017. Accommodation and food service jobs have seen an upswing in the county, increasing by 82 percent over the 10-year period.

Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting is by far the most prominent industry sector in terms of relative concentration in the county, with a location quotient (LQ) of 6.16. The number of jobs in these industries have increased by 39 percent, from 229 jobs in 2007 to 318 in 2017. The educational services sector has seen an increase of almost 330 percent between 2007 and 2017. Many of the smaller industry sectors experienced decreases across the time period, especially in the construction and manufacturing sectors. However, the strong growth in the largest industry sectors resulted in a slight growth (2 %) in the overall number of jobs.

Detailed Employment Change in Piatt County, 2007-2017 shows the detailed employment change in Piatt County between 2007 and 2017. The largest change in the number of jobs is seen among fast food and counter workers, growing by 109 jobs (111%). Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers are job titles that also saw significant growth in the county. Between 2007 and 2017, the number of these jobs increased by 45 percent.

The 20 biggest industries based on the number of employees in the county are shown in Top 20 Industry Sectors Based on Employees, Piatt County 2016. Local government, including education, is the largest employer in Piatt County, with more than 800 total employees. It is also the largest in terms of payroll, with a combined payroll of more than $42 million in 2016. The largest sector in terms of output is grain farming, exceeding $105 million in 2016.

The 20 biggest industry sectors by total sales in Piatt County are listed. The largest industry is local government, excluding education and hospitals, with sales in 2017 exceeding $60 million. The crop production industry is the second largest in terms of sales. But compared to the local government sector, the crop production industry has a vast majority of its sales occurring outside the county. This is also true for many of the smaller sectors, including pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing.

**: The given industry’s total annual sales (gross receipts), both to other industries and to consumers.
***: The percent of the given industry’s total sales that occur outside the defined region.

Largest Business in Piatt County

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there were 326 establishments in Piatt County in 2016. An establishment is a single physical location at which business is conducted or where services or industrial operations are performed. 1 The 10 largest employers are listed. Kirby Medical Center employs the most workers, with 285 employees. Monticello Community Unit School District #25 and the City of Monticello are also major employers in the county.

Business size within the county is categorized by number of employees. A majority of businesses in Piatt County have between one and nine employees, accounting for 66.1 percent of total establishments county-wide. There is also a relatively large share of companies with between 10 and 49 employees (30.5%). The share of businesses that employ more than 99 individuals is 1.1 percent.

Projected Employment Change By Industry

The projected employment change by industry between 2017 and 2027 is depicted. The biggest percent change is projected to occur in the accommodation and food services sectors with an increase of 70 percent between 2017 and 2027. The health care and social assistance industry is also expected grow significantly, with a projected job growth of 99 jobs (22%).

The number of wholesale trade jobs is projected to continue to decline, from 244 in 2017 to approximately 212 in 2027. This is the only industry sector expected to shrink over the time period. Overall, the total number of jobs county-wide is projected to grow by about 16 percent, an increase of 683 jobs over the 10-year period.

Occupational Characteristics

Among Top Cities Posting in Piatt County between April 2017 and April 2018, Monticello and Bement were the two cities with the greatest number of unique job postings in Piatt County between April 2017 and April 2018. Monticello had the most job postings, with 662 positions for hire over a 12-month period.

CRST International was the company posting the most jobs in the county, followed by Mutual of Omaha and USA Truck. The median posting duration range from four days to 72 days among the listed companies.

The three most common job titles in demand in Piatt County between April 2017 and April 2018 were truck drivers, sales representatives, and financial representatives. There was also a high demand for entry level salespersons and delivery drivers.

The The most sought-after common skills* in Piatt County between April 2017 and April 2018 are listed. Management was desired in 18 percent of the job postings and was the most frequently mentioned skill. Sales and financial services skills were also in high demand, appearing in 10 and 18 percent of the job postings county-wide, respectively.

*: A skill is the understanding and ability that allows a person to perform a task adequately.

The top 10 most sought-after qualifications in the county are summarized. A commercial driver’s license (CDL) was the most common qualification* requested in job postings between April 2017 and April 2018. There were also several postings seeking various nursing qualifications, the most common being licensed practical nurses with 9 postings.

*: A qualification is an achievement that makes an individual appropriate for a particular job or task.