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Statistical comparison of Spokane, Kootenai counties

Kootenai County residents get less health care, income than Spokane

 For all the perceived differences between the two, Spokane County and Kootenai County are close relatives, statistically speaking. Many similarities between the cross-border neighbors emerge in the 2011 American Community Survey, released Thursday by the U.S. Census Bureau.

 Spokane County is a bit younger and better paid, is less settled down and more diverse racially. Kootenai County has a little less higher education, but the difference isn’t pronounced. Still, a few things stand out when comparing the two counties:

• More than half of Spokane County residents were born in Washington, but fewer than a third of Kootenai County residents were born in Idaho.

• Children in Kootenai County are twice as likely to have no health insurance coverage.

• Rental housing is more expensive in Kootenai County.

• Annual household income in Kootenai County has dropped nearly 6 percent, or almost $3,000 per household, in the past five years. That’s more than twice as much as in Spokane County.

Web extra: Explore regional census information at

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Graphic by Molly Quinn