The 2014 To 2018 Analysis Of Impediments






Analysis of Impediments

to

Fair Housing Choice


County of Berks

&

City of Reading 2014 - 2018


1







Table of Contents




A.What is Fair Housing Choice?5
B.The Federal Fair Housing Act6
i.What housing is covered?6
ii.What does the Fair Housing Act prohibit?6
a.In the Sale and Rental of Housing6
b.In Mortgage Lending7
c.Other Prohibitions7
iii.Additional Protections for the Disabled7
iv.Requirements for New Buildings8
v.Housing Opportunities for Families8
C.The City of Reading Discrimination Ordinance9
D.The Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (PHRA)10
E.Methodology11
F.Census Data11
G.Areas of Racial or Ethnic Concentration12
2.BACKGROUND DATA12
A.Demographic Data12
i.Total Population12
B.Protected Classes13
i.Persons by Race and Ethnic Origin13
C.Ancestry21
i.Family Households and Female-Headed Households24
ii.Disability Status27
D.Income Data30
i.Median Household Income30
ii.Low and Moderate Income Persons31
E.Employment Data35
i.Civilian Labor Force35
F.Housing Data38
i.Cost of Housing38
ii.Home Ownership40
iii.Cost Burdened Households43
G.Public Housing46
H.Public and Assisted Housing46
I.Public Transit50
J.Private Sector Housing51
i.Real Estate Practices51
K.Berks County Mental Health/Developmental Disabilities Program (MH/DD)52
L.Newspaper Advertising53
M.Public Sector53
N.Regulations of Group Homes for Persons with Disabilities54
O.Federal Entitlement Programs55
i.Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program55
ii.HOME Program55
iii.Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG) Program56
P.Evaluation of Current Fair Housing Legal Status56
Q.Existence of Fair Housing Complaints56
i.U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)56
ii.U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)57
iii.Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (PHRC)57
iV.City of Reading Human Relations Commission57
v.City of Reading 58
vi.Public Comment58
3.SUMMARY OF ANALYSIS59
4.FAIR HOUSING ACTION PLAN61





  1. Introduction


    Like all communities that receive money from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (H.U.D.), as entitlement communities, the City of Reading and the County of Berks are jointly amending the Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing that was prepared in 2008. The Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 requires that any community receiving Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds, HOME Investment Partnerships (HOME) funds, Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG) funds and Housing Opportunities for Person with AIDS (HOPWA) funds “affirmatively further fair housing”.

    The intent of this analysis is to identify and devise solutions which may impact any impediments to fair housing choice that citizens throughout Berks County may face. The analysis of impediments to fair housing choice is a review of a jurisdiction’s laws, regulations, and administrative policies, procedures, and practices affecting the location, availability, and accessibility of housing, as well as an assessment of conditions, both public and private, affecting fair housing choice.

    Among these considerations, HUD’s primary objectives encompass:


    • Eliminating housing discrimination within our jurisdiction

    • Promote fair housing choice for all persons regardless of Race, Color, National Origin, Religion, Sex, Familial Status or handicap

    • Advancing & promoting housing that is accessible to all, most importantly including those persons with disabilities

    • Promoting racially & ethnically inclusive communities


The County of Berks and the City of Reading are entitlement communities and receive CDBG, HOME, and ESG funds from HUD. As a result, these two local units of government are charged with the responsibility of conducting CDBG, HOME, ESG, and any other federal programs in compliance with the federal Fair Housing Act. The responsibility of compliance with the federal Fair Housing Act extends to nonprofit organizations and other entities that receive federal funds through the County and/or the City.

HUD requires a recipient of funds to:


  1. Conduct an analysis to identify impediments to fair housing choice within its jurisdiction

  2. Take action to overcome the effect of those identified impediments

  3. Maintain documentation which reflects the actions taken as a result of the analysis.


In addition to the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, the Civil Rights Act of 1968 also directs HUD’s review of fair housing practices. An amendment to Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act was passed in 1988. The amendment, known as the Fair Housing Act of 1988, expanded the scope of coverage of the law to include families with children and handicapped persons as protected classes. Enforcement powers for HUD, including a monetary penalty for discrimination, were also added.


  1. What is Fair Housing Choice?

    Equal and free access to residential housing (housing choice) is fundamental to meeting essential needs and pursuing personal, educational, employment, or other goals. Because housing choice is so critical, fair housing is a goal that government, public officials, and private citizens must achieve if equality of opportunity is to become a reality.

    Fair housing choice is defined as the "ability of persons, regardless of Race, Color, Religion, Sex, National Origin, Familial Status, Disability, or of similar income levels to have available to them the same housing choices." This analysis encompasses the following six areas:

    • The sale or rental of dwellings (public and private)

    • The provision of housing brokerage services

    • The provision of financing assistance for dwellings

    • Public policies and actions affecting the approval of sites and other building requirements used in the approval process for the construction of publicly assisted housing

    • The administrative policies concerning community development and housing activities, which affect opportunities of minority households to select housing inside or outside areas of minority or ethnic concentration, and

    • Where there is a determination of unlawful segregation or other housing discrimination by a court or a finding of noncompliance by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) regarding assisted housing in a recipient's jurisdiction, an analysis of the actions which could be taken by the recipient to remedy the discriminatory condition, including actions involving the expenditure of funds made available under 24 CFR Part 570.

    • This analysis will:

    • Evaluate population, household, income, and housing characteristics by protected classes in Berks County and the City of Reading

    • Evaluate public and private sector policies that impact fair housing choice

      • Identify blatant or de facto impediments to fair housing choice, where any may exist

      • Recommend specific strategies to overcome the effects of any identified impediments.

      The completion of a fair housing analysis and identification of fair housing impediments is the first phase in fair housing planning. The elected governmental body is expected to review and approve the analysis and use it for direction, leadership, and resources for future fair housing planning.

      The analysis will serve as a baseline for progress against which implementation efforts will be judged.


  2. The Federal Fair Housing Act

    1. What housing is covered?

      The Federal Fair Housing Act covers most housing. In some circumstances, the Act exempts owner-occupied buildings with no more than four units, single family housing sold or rented without the use of a broker, and housing operated by organizations and private clubs that limit occupancy to members.

    2. What does the Fair Housing Act prohibit?

      1. In the Sale and Rental of Housing

        No one may take any of the following actions based on Race, Color, National Origin, Religion, Sex, Familial Status, or Disability:

        • Refuse to rent or sell housing

        • Refuse to negotiate for housing

        • Make housing unavailable

        • Deny a dwelling

        • Set different terms, conditions or privileges for the sale or rental of a dwelling

        • Provide different housing services or facilities

        • Falsely deny that housing is available for inspection, sale, or rental

        • For profit, persuade owners to sell or rent (blockbusting) or

        • Deny anyone access to or membership in a facility or service (such as a multiple listing service) related to the sale or rental of housing.

      2. In Mortgage Lending

        No one may take any of the following actions based on Race, Color, National Origin, Religion, Sex, Familial Status, or Disability:

        • Refuse to make a mortgage loan

        • Refuse to provide information regarding loans

        • Impose different terms or conditions on a loan, such as different interest rates, points, or fees

        • Discriminate in appraising property

        • Refuse to purchase a loan or

        • Set different terms or conditions for purchasing a loan.

      3. Other Prohibitions

        It is illegal for anyone to:

        • Threaten, coerce, intimidate, or interfere with anyone exercising a fair housing right or assisting others who exercise that right

        • Advertise or make any statement that indicates a limitation or preference based on Race, Color, National Origin, Religion, Sex, Familial Status, or Disability. This prohibition against discriminatory advertising applies to single family and owner- occupied housing that is otherwise exempt from the Fair Housing Act.

    3. Additional Protections for the Disabled

      If someone has a physical or mental disability (which can include hearing, mobility, and visual impairments, chronic alcoholism, chronic mental illness, AIDS, and mental retardation) that substantially limits one or more major life activities, or has a record of such a disability, or is regarded as having such a disability, a landlord may not:

      • Refuse to let a disabled person make reasonable modifications to a dwelling or common use areas, at the disabled person’s expense, if necessary for the disabled person to use the housing. (Where reasonable, the landlord may permit changes only if the disabled person agrees to restore the property to its original condition when he or she moves.)

      • Refuse to make reasonable accommodations in rules, policies, practices or services if necessary for the disabled person to use the housing.

      A “reasonable accommodation” is a change, exception, or adjustment to a rule, policy, practice, or service that may be necessary for a person with a disability to fully enjoy their apartment or house. Common accommodations include providing a mobility impaired person with an accessible parking space, allowing a tenant to have a service animal, or the installation of a ramp for wheelchair access.

    4. Requirements for New Buildings

      In buildings that are ready for first occupancy after March 13, 1991 and have an elevator and four or more units:

      • Public and common areas must be accessible to persons with disabilities

      • Doors and hallways must be wide enough for wheelchairs

      • All units must have:

      • An accessible route into and through the unit

      • Accessible light switches, electrical outlets, thermostats, and other environmental controls

      • Reinforced bathroom walls to allow later installation of grab bars and

      • Kitchens and bathrooms that can be used by people in wheelchairs. If a building with four or more units has no elevator and will be ready for first occupancy after March 13, 1991, these standards apply to ground floor units. These requirements for new buildings do not replace any more stringent standards in State or local law.

    5. Housing Opportunities for Families

    Unless a building or community qualifies as housing for older persons, it may not discriminate based on familial status. That is, it may not discriminate against families in which one or more children under the age 18 live with:

    • A parent

    • A person who has legal custody of the child or children or

    • The designee of the parent or legal custodian, with the parent or custodian's written permission.

      Familial status protection also applies to pregnant women and anyone securing legal custody of a child under age 18.

      Housing for older persons is exempt from the prohibition against familial status discrimination if:

    • The Secretary of HUD has determined that it is specifically designed for and occupied by elderly persons under a federal, State, or local government program or

    • It is occupied solely by persons who are 62 or older or

    • It houses at least one person who is 55 or older in at least 80% of the occupied units, and adheres to a policy that demonstrates the intent to house persons who are 55 or older.

    A transition period permits residents on or before September 13, 1988 to continue living in the housing, regardless of their age, without interfering with the exemption.


  3. The City of Reading Discrimination Ordinance

    The City of Reading ’s Ordinance, 23-501, as amended, details the City’s position on discrimination. The City of Reading Human Relations Commission (RHRC) enforces the ordinance. The RHRC is the only local agency that can enforce Fair Housing Laws and is a substantially equivalent agency to HUD.

    The RHRC ordinance prohibits discrimination based upon Race, Color, Religion, Ancestry, National Origin, Age, Sex, Familial Status, handicap or previous opposition to individual discriminatory practices which are contrary to the constitutions, laws and policies of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the United States of America.

    In 2009, the ordinance was expanded and two additional protected classes were included; Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation.

    In Section 23-504 of the Ordinance the City of Reading establishes the Human Relations Commission to;

    Administer, implement and enforce the provisions of the ordinance Adopt rules & regulations to enforce the Ordinance

    Act upon complaints filed with the RHRC

    Issue subpoenas for persons and documents which may assist in the investigation of the complaint

    Hold investigative hearings in cases of racial tension and/or discrimination Publish findings

    Enforce fair practices in City contracts

    The ordinance describes unlawful acts of discrimination and details the procedures an aggrieved party would follow to file a complaint.


    Section 23-507 details what unlawful housing practices the Ordinance covers. Prohibited practices include (but are not limited to);

    Refusal to rent or sell

    Discriminatory terms and conditions of a sale or rental Advertise in a discriminatory way

    Refuse to make reasonable accommodations and/or modifications Discriminatory lending practices

    Intimidation, coercion or threats


  4. The Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (PHRA)

    The Pennsylvania Human Relations Act, as amended, prohibits housing discrimination based on Race, Color, Familial Status, Religion, Ancestry, Disability, Age, Sex, National Origin, and the use of guide or support animals because of a disability.

    The PHRA is enforced by the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (PHRC). Some areas in Berks County are not within the jurisdiction of the RHRC and therefore those residents could be assisted by PHRC with complaints of housing discrimination.

    Section 6 of the PHRA establishes the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (PHRC). The powers and duties of PHRC include:

    • The adoption of rules and regulations to carry out the PHRA

    • The formulation of recommendations to units of local government

    • The power to act upon complaints filed with PHRC

    • The issuance of publications and reports to promote good will and eliminate discrimination

    • The distribution of fair practice notices

    • The provision of notification to local human relation commissions of complaints received by PHRC from within a commission’s jurisdiction

    • The publication of all findings, decisions, and orders.

      The PHRA describes unlawful acts of discrimination and sets forth the procedure for aggrieved parties to file complaints. The act also describes PHRC’s process for investigating and processing complaints.

      Section 5 of the PHRA deals with fair housing. Prohibited practices include:

    • Discriminatory real estate practices, including refusal to sell or lease housing accommodations to members of the protected classes



      10


    • Discrimination in the terms and conditions of real estate transactions

    • Discrimination in the lending of money to acquire, construct, rehabilitate, repair or maintain housing

    • Discrimination in the refusal to make reasonable accommodation

    • Advertising or marketing real estate in a way that makes members of the protected classes feel unwelcome or not solicited

    • Making an inquiry concerning Race, Color, Familial Status, Age, Religion, Ancestry, Sex, National Origin or Disability


  5. Methodology

    The City of Reading Human Relations Commission with the assistance of Berks County conducted the analysis of impediments to fair housing choice. The following sources were utilized:

    The most recently available demographic data regarding population, household, housing income and employment at the census tract and municipal levels.

    Public policies which affect the location and development of housing

    Financial lending institution data from the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) database

    Agencies that provide housing and housing related services to members of protected classes. These agencies include the following:

    Berks County Redevelopment Authority

    City of Reading Community Development Department City of Reading Human Relations Commission Reading Housing Authority

    Berks County Housing Authority Service Access Management

    Reading-Berks Association of Realtors Family Promise

    Opportunity House

    Berks Coalition to End Homelessness


  6. Census Data

    The primary source of data for this report is Census 2010. In some instances more recent data is used.


    Throughout this analysis, comparisons are made between white residents and racial/ethnic minority residents. In Berks County, racial/ethnic minority residents include African Americans, American Indians/Alaskan Natives, Asians/Pacific Islanders, persons of some other race alone, persons of two or more races, and Hispanics. In Berks County, with the exception of African American & Hispanic residents, the number of persons within each of these racial/ethnic minority groups is too small for the Census Bureau to provide data at the municipality level or census tract level. As a result, most comparisons of the trends and conditions are provided only for white residents, black residents and Hispanic residents.

    All municipalities in Berks County are included in the data tables in this analysis; however some boroughs are too small to provide any meaningful demographic analysis.


  7. Areas of Racial or Ethnic Concentration

HUD defines areas of racial or ethnic concentration as geographical areas where the percentage of minorities or ethnic persons is 10 percentage points higher than the County’s percentage. And, while there may exist areas of minority or ethnic concentration, other characteristics must also be present in order before a potential impediment to fair housing can be identified. For example, if high rates of poverty and low-moderate income persons are also found within an area of minority concentration, there may exist a potential impediment to fair housing choice.


  1. BACKGROUND DATA

    1. Demographic Data

      1. Total Population

        Berks County, located in eastern Pennsylvania, has experienced a consistent increase in population beginning in 1980. In 2007, American Community Survey (ACS) data reported a total population of 398,155. The 2010 census data reports that the total population now stands at 411,447. This represents an increase of 13,292 people in 3 years.

        The City of Reading is the seat of Berks County. In 2007 the number of residents in the City was approximately 80,951. As of 2010, Reading has a population of 88,082. That is an increase of 7,131 people or 8%. According to the 2010 census Reading was the fifth most populated city in the state.

        Comparing chart 2-1 to previous years, seventeen (17) of the municipalities listed experienced a decrease in population.


    2. Protected Classes

      1. Persons by Race and Ethnic Origin

        The racial make-up of Berks County has continued to undergo a significant shift with the number of racial minority residents which initially began increasing in 1990. In 2000, the number of racial minority residents more than doubled from 21,962 to 44,178. American Community Survey (ACS) data reveal that these trends have continued. In 2007, the County’s racial minority population was estimated at 54,180 residents which was equivalent to 13.6% of the total population.

        In the City of Reading , the number of racial minority residents was 33,148 in 2000. By 2007, the number of racial minorities had increased to 35,157, equivalent to 43.4% of the total population. According to census 2010 data the city minority population has risen to 51.6% of the total population and Hispanics make up 58.2% of the population.

        The minority population is diversifying and increasing. In 2007, ACS reported that blacks represented 33% of all minorities. The largest increase occurred in the “Some Other Race Alone” category, which increased from 24,916 residents in 2007 to 32,101 or 7.8% of the population in 2010.


        Figure 2-1

        Population Trends - 2000 to 2010

        % Change


        2000


        2010

        2000 -

        2010

        Pennsylvania

        12,281,054

        12,702,379

        3.80%

        Berks County

        373,638

        411,442

        9%

        Reading city

        81,207

        88,082

        7.80%

        Albany township

        1,662

        1,724

        3.73%

        Alsace township

        3,689

        3,751

        1.68%

        Amity township

        8,869

        12,583

        41.88%

        Bally borough

        1,062

        1,090

        2.64%

        Bechtelsville borough

        931

        942

        1.18%

        Bern township

        6,758

        6,797

        0.58%

        Bernville borough

        865

        955

        10.40%

        Bethel township

        4,166

        4,112

        -1.30%

        Birdsboro borough

        5,064

        5,163

        1.95%

        Boyertown borough

        3,940

        4,055

        2.92%

        Brecknock township

        4,569

        4,585

        0.35%

        Caernavon township

        2,312

        4,006

        73.27%

        Centerport borough

        327

        387

        18.35%

        Centre township

        3,631

        4,036

        11.15%

        Colebrookdale township

        5,270

        5,078

        -3.64%

        Cumru township

        13,816

        15,147

        9.63%

        District township

        1,449

        1,337

        -7.73%

        Douglass township

        3,327

        3,306

        -0.63%

        Earl township

        3,050

        3,195

        4.75%

        Exeter township

        21,161

        25,550

        20.74%

        Fleetwood township

        4,018

        4,085

        1.67%

        Greenwich township

        3,386

        3,725

        10.01%

        Hamburg borough

        4,114

        4,289

        4.25%

        Heidelberg township

        1,636

        1,724

        5.38%

        Hereford township

        3,174

        2,997

        -5.58%

        Jefferson township

        1,604

        1,977

        23.25%

        Kenhorst borough

        2,679

        2,877

        7.39%

        Kutztown borough

        5,067

        5,012

        -1.09%

        Laureldale borough

        3,759

        3,911

        4.04%

        Leesport borough

        1,805

        1,918

        6.26%

        Lenhartsville borough

        173

        165

        -4.62%

        Longswamp township

        5,608

        5,679

        1.27%

        Lower Alsace township

        4,478

        4,475

        -0.07%

        Lower Heidelberg township

        4,150

        5,513

        32.84%

        Lyons borough

        504

        478

        -5.16%

        Maidencreek township

        6,553

        9,126

        39.26%

        Marion township

        1,573

        1,688

        7.31%

        Maxatawny township

        5,982

        7,906

        32.16%

        Mohnton borough

        2,963

        3,043

        2.70%

        Mount Penn borough

        3,016

        3,106

        2.98%

        Muhlenberg township

        16,305

        19,628

        20.38%

        New Morgan Borough

        71

        71

        0.00%

        North Heidelberg township

        1,325

        1,214

        -8.38%

        Oley township

        3,583

        3,620

        1.03%

        Ontelaunee township

        1,217

        1,646

        35.25%

        Penn township

        1,993

        1,949

        -2.21%

        Perry township

        2,517

        2,417

        -3.97%

        Pike township

        1,667

        1,723

        3.36%

        Richmond township

        3,500

        3,397

        -2.94%

        Robeson township

        6,869

        7,216

        5.05%

        Robesonia borough

        2,036

        2,061

        1.23%

        Rockland township

        3,765

        3,778

        0.35%

        Ruscombmanor township

        3,776

        4,112

        8.90%

        St. Lawrence borough

        1,812

        1,809

        -0.17%

        Shillington borough

        5,059

        5,273

        4.23%

        Shoemakersville borough

        2,124

        1,378

        -35.12%

        Sinking Spring borough

        2,639

        4,008

        51.88%

        South Heidelberg township

        5,491

        7,271

        32.42%

        Spring township

        21,805

        27,119

        24.37%

        Strausstown borough

        339

        342

        0.88%

        Tilden township

        3,553

        3,597

        1.24%

        Topton borough

        1,948

        2,069

        6.21%

        Tulpehocken township

        3,290

        3,274

        -0.49%

        Union township

        3,453

        3,503

        1.45%

        Upper Bern township

        1,479

        1,734

        17.24%

        Upper Tulpehocken township

        1,495

        1,575

        5.35%

        Washington township

        3,354

        3,810

        13.60%

        Wernersville borough

        2,150

        2,494

        16.00%

        West Reading borough

        4,049

        4,212

        4.03%

        Windsor township

        2,392

        2,279

        -4.72%

        Womelsdorf borough

        2,599

        2,810

        8.12%

        Wyomissing borough

        8,587

        10,461

        21.82%


        In the previous analysis of impediments, persons of “some other Race alone” were the largest minority group in Berks County. However, according the most recent census data, this is no longer true. Minorities make up 16.8% of the population with the largest group now being Hispanics (16.4%).

        The second largest group is those persons of “some other Race alone”. This group now comprises 7.8% of the population.

        Between the years of 2000 through 2010 Blacks have remained the 3rd largest minority group behind Hispanics and some other Race alone. In 2010 Blacks made up 4.9% of the county population.

        Figure 2-2

        Trend in Population by Race & Ethnic Origin 2000-2010



        2000


        2007


        2010

        % Change 2000 –

        2010

        Total Population

        373,638

        100.0%

        398,155

        100.0%

        411,442

        100.0%

        White Population

        329,460

        88.2%

        343,975

        86.4%

        342,148

        83.2%

        Non-White Population

        44,178

        11.8%

        54,180

        13.6%

        69,294

        16.8%

        Black

        13,778

        3.7%

        18,008

        4.5%

        20,143

        4.9%

        American Indian/Alaskan Native

        611

        0.2%

        593

        0.1%

        1285

        0.3%

        Asian/Pacific Islander

        3,862

        1.0%

        4,834

        1.2%

        5,513

        1.3%

        Some other Race Alone

        20,317

        5.4%

        24,916

        6.3%

        32,101

        7.8%

        Two or more Races

        5,610

        1.5%

        5,829

        1.5%

        10,252

        2.5%

        Hispanic

        36,357

        9.7%

        50,825

        12.8%

        67,355

        16.4%


        Although progress has been made in terms of decreasing disproportionate with minority representation in the county most specifically through the increase of Hispanics residents within the county, the majority of racial and ethnic minorities continue to reside in the City of Reading .

        Table 2-3 demonstrates that the populations in most of the municipalities are majority white. However, 17 of the municipalities (in bold) have shown growth in their minority populations. Most notably is West Reading which has a minority population of 23.4% and a Hispanic population of 18.3% followed by Sinking Spring at 15.1% and 8.9% then Muhlenberg at 14.1% and 13.8% respectively. It should be noted that New Morgan has a minority population of 64.8% and a 19.7% Hispanic population. However this number includes juvenile detention center residents.


        Figure 2-3 Municipality Population by Race and Ethnic Origin 2010

        Total

        White

        Non-White

        Hispanic

        Berks County

        441,442

        83.20%

        16.80%

        16.40%

        Reading city

        88,082

        48.40%

        51.60%

        58.20%

        Albany township

        1,724

        98.60%

        1.40%

        1.40%

        Alsace township

        3,751

        97.10%

        2.90%

        2.10%

        Amity township

        12,583

        91.90%

        8.10%

        2.40%

        Bally borough

        1,090

        97.50%

        0.80%

        1.40%

        Bechtelsville borough

        942

        98.30%

        1.70%

        1.30%

        Bern township

        6,797

        91.00%

        9.00%

        9.30%

        Bernville borough

        955

        94.10%

        5.90%

        7.60%

        Bethel township

        4,112

        95.40%

        4.60%

        4.00%

        Birdsboro borough

        5,163

        95.50%

        4.50%

        3.20%

        Boyertown borough

        4,055

        97.50%

        2.50%

        1.10%

        Brecknock township

        4,585

        95.60%

        4.40%

        2.10%

        Caernarvon township

        4,006

        93.80%

        6.20%

        1.60%

        Centerport borough

        387

        96.40%

        3.60%

        3.60%

        Centre township

        4,036

        99.60%

        0.40%

        2.50%

        Colebrookdale township

        5,078

        97.80%

        2.20%

        1.40%

        Cumru township

        15,147

        90.80%

        9.20%

        6.50%

        District township

        1,337

        97.80%

        2.20%

        0.50%

        Douglass township

        3,306

        93.40%

        6.60%

        1.10%

        Earl township

        3,195

        97.90%

        2.10%

        1.10%

        Exeter township

        25,550

        91.90%

        8.10%

        3.60%

        Fleetwood township

        4,085

        95.80%

        4.20%

        3.40%

        Greenwich township

        3,725

        96.90%

        3.10%

        2.60%

        Hamburg borough

        4,289

        96.30%

        3.70%

        3.00%

        Heidelberg township

        1,724

        94.50%

        5.50%

        2.30%

        Hereford township

        2,997

        96.80%

        3.20%

        2.10%

        Jefferson township

        1,977

        93.90%

        6.10%

        3.60%

        Kenhorst borough

        2,877

        89.00%

        11.00%

        9.60%

        Kutztown borough

        5,012

        95.80%

        4.20%

        2.60%

        Laureldale borough

        3,911

        86.80%

        13.20%

        16.10%

        Leesport borough

        1,918

        94.80%

        5.20%

        4.20%

        Lenhartsville borough

        165

        95.80%

        4.20%

        3.00%

        Longswamp township

        5,679

        97.70%

        2.30%

        1.50%

        Lower Alsace township

        4,475

        92.20%

        7.80%

        7.80%

        Lower Heidelberg township

        5,513

        92.70%

        7.30%

        4.00%

        Lyons borough

        478

        97.30%

        2.70%

        1.90%

        Maidencreek township

        9,126

        91.8

        8.20%

        5.70%

        Marion township

        1,688

        97.50%

        2.50%

        2.00%

        Maxatawny township

        7,906

        92.10%

        7.90%

        2.80%

        Mohnton borough

        3,043

        94.50%

        5.50%

        4.90%

        Mount Penn borough

        3,106

        84.30%

        13.70%

        14.10%

        Muhlenberg township

        19,628

        85.90%

        14.10%

        13.80%

        New Morgan borough

        71

        35.20%

        64.80%

        19.70%

        North Heidelberg township

        1,214

        97.20%

        2.80%

        2.00%

        Oley township

        3,620

        97.90%

        2.10%

        1.90%

        Ontelaunee township

        1,646

        86.20%

        13.80%

        8.40%

        Penn township

        1,949

        95.90%

        4.10%

        4.90%

        Perry township

        2,417

        95.40%

        4.60%

        3.80%

        Pike township

        1,723

        97.80%

        2.20%

        0.80%

        Richmond township

        3,397

        97.70%

        2.30%

        1.80%

        Robeson township

        7,216

        97.80%

        2.20%

        1.30%

        Robesonia borough

        2,061

        94.30%

        5.70%

        4.40%

        Rockland township

        3,778

        97.70%

        2.30%

        1.80%

        Ruscombmanor township

        4,112

        98.10%

        1.90%

        1.10%

        St. Lawrence borough

        1,809

        91.70%

        8.30%

        7.50%

        Shillington borough

        5,273

        89.90%

        10.10%

        8.50%

        Shoemakersville borough

        1,378

        98.40%

        1.60%

        2.70%

        Sinking Spring borough

        4,008

        84.90%

        15.10%

        8.90%

        South Heidelberg township

        7,271

        91.90%

        8.10%

        4.90%

        Spring township

        27,119

        87.90%

        12.10%

        6.10%

        Strausstown borough

        342

        98.20%

        1.80%

        2.30%

        Tilden township

        3,597

        96.70%

        3.30%

        4.00%

        Topton borough

        2,069

        97.40%

        2.60%

        2.80%

        Tulpehocken township

        3,274

        93.80%

        6.20%

        4.60%

        Union township

        3,503

        97.10%

        2.90%

        1.20%

        Upper Bern township

        1,734

        96.50%

        3.50%

        2.70%

        Upper Tulpehocken township

        1,575

        96.60%

        3.40%

        3.30%

        Washington township

        3,810

        97.90%

        2.10%

        1.20%

        Wernersville borough

        2,494

        92.90%

        7.10%

        4.00%

        West Reading borough

        4,212

        77.60%

        23.40%

        18.30%

        Windsor township

        2,279

        96.80%

        3.20%

        1.30%

        Womelsdorf borough

        2,810

        92.50%

        7.50%

        4.20%

        Wyomissing borough

        10,461

        91.00%

        9.00%

        5.40%


        The minority population of Berks County continues to be heavily concentrated in Reading, which is the largest city. The disparity between the percentage of minorities living in the boroughs and townships and the percentage residing in the City of Reading may suggest that housing options are limited for ethnic and or racial minorities outside of the City due to several factors which may include economics.


        Figure 2-4

        Population by Race and Ethnic Origin – 2010


        Total


        White alone


        All Minorities


        Hispanic


        Black

        American Indian / Alaskan Native


        Asian Alone


        Hawaiian

        / Pacific Islander

        Some other Race Alone


        Two or More Races

        Berks County

        411,442

        342,148

        69,294

        67,355

        20,143

        1,285

        5,385

        128

        32,101

        10,252

        Reading City

        88,082

        42,617

        45,465

        51,230

        11,624

        794

        1,039

        72

        26,538

        5,398

        Reading as a % of the County

        22%

        12%

        66%

        76%

        58%

        62%

        19%

        56%

        83%

        53%



        As the chart demonstrates the City of Reading continues to have the largest concentration of minorities and Hispanics. Whites make up 48.4% of city of

        Reading’s population, blacks make up 13.2% and Hispanics make up 58.1% of the population.

        Upon evaluating the previous numbers since 1990 the data reveals that although ethnic & racial minorities have moved into the boroughs and townships of the county the majority remains in Reading suggesting a persisting pattern of concentration of ethnic minorities. Minorities only represent 17% of the county’s population.


        Figure 2-5

        Change in Population by Race and Ethnic Origin-2010


        Total


        White alone


        All Minorities*


        Hispanic


        Black

        American Indian / Alaskan Native


        Asian Alone

        Some other Race Alone

        Berks County


        37,804


        12,688


        25,116


        30,998


        6,365


        674


        1,600


        11,784

        Reading city

        6,875

        -5,892

        12,317

        20,928

        1,677

        438

        -257

        8,413


        HUD defines an area of racial or ethnic concentration as an area with a population of racial or ethnic minority residents of 10 percentage points or higher than the County’s overall percentage. Concern over the situation of areas of concentrations of racial/ethnic minority residents generally arise when the same geographic areas are also noted to contain a disproportionately higher rate of low-income persons, lower homeownership rates and higher rates of unemployed or underemployed persons, among other issues.

        The City of Reading is an area of racial or ethnic concentration for Hispanics, blacks and persons of some other race alone.


        Figure 2-6

        Areas of Concentration of Minority and Hispanic Residents, Berks County– 2010



        Total Population


        All Minorities


        Hispanic


        Black

        Some other Race Alone

        Berks County

        411,442

        12%

        10%

        4%

        5%

        Reading city

        88,082

        41%

        37%

        12%

        22%

        CT 1

        5,346

        38.9%

        61.1%

        13.8%

        31.4%

        CT 2

        3,970

        38.4%

        57.7%

        17.3%

        30.7%

        CT 3

        2,172

        35.3%

        49.6%

        13.5%

        27.2%

        CT 4

        3,936

        40.4%

        57.3%

        13.5%

        32.1%

        CT 5

        3,554

        35.7%

        52.6%

        8.6%

        28.4%

        CT 6

        3,261

        15%

        18.1%

        9.9%

        6.6%

        CT 7

        4,196

        38%

        59.1%

        10.1%

        29.0%

        CT 8

        4,405

        49.1%

        68.3%

        9.3%

        39.6%

        CT 9

        2,696

        36.7%

        49.5%

        18.0%

        28.9%

        CT 10

        3,248

        43.8%

        68.7%

        19.3%

        33.9%

        CT 11

        4,184

        43.9%

        70.2%

        17.6%

        35.9%

        CT 12

        1,741

        44%

        67.3%

        25.6%

        36.0%

        CT 13

        2,970

        36.1%

        68.2%

        17.7%

        29.2%

        CT 14

        4,494

        50%

        74.8%

        9.6%

        40.0%

        CT 15

        3,730

        45.9%

        68.0%

        10.7%

        34.6%

        CT 16

        2,670

        39.5%

        58.9%

        10.1%

        28.6%

        CT 17

        3,224

        52.9%

        77.6%

        6.5%

        42.9%

        CT 18

        2,874

        28.8%

        38.3%

        13.5%

        20.6%

        CT 19

        2,539

        35.8%

        56.3%

        16.7%

        28.9%

        CT 20

        4,181

        29.4%

        44.2%

        13.5%

        22.0%

        CT 21

        2,783

        39.3%

        59.9%

        15.3%

        32.3%

        CT 22

        2,026

        46.7%

        75.3%

        15.6%

        39.6%

        CT 23

        2,186

        47%

        69.3%

        12.5%

        40.0%

        CT 25

        3,201

        41.9%

        69.8%

        17.6%

        33.7%

        CT 26

        3,330

        40.8%

        68.7%

        13.5%

        31.4%

        CT 27

        2,071

        16.7%

        22.4%

        7.0%

        12.0%

        CT 29

        3,094

        15.3%

        20.9%

        7.6%

        9.8%

        Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Census 2010,


        1. Ancestry

          There were 19% foreign born persons living in the City of Reading between 2010

          – 2012. Of that number 31% were naturalized U.S. citizens, and 93% entered the county before the year 2010, 8% entered the county in 2010 or later.

          Between 2010- 2012 81% of people living in the city were native residents of the United States. More than half (52%) remained living in the state in which they were born.


          Figure 2-7

          Foreign-Born Population by Municipality – 2008-2012


          Foreign-Born Residents


          Total


          Native-Born Residents

          Naturalized Citizens


          Not Citizens


          Total Foreign-Born Residents

          Population

          #

          %

          #

          %

          #

          %

          #

          %

          Pennsylvania

          12,281,054

          11,772,763

          95.9%

          257,339

          2.1%

          250,952

          2.0%

          508,291

          4.1%

          Berks County

          373,638

          357,606

          95.7%

          7,116

          1.9%

          8,916

          2.4%

          16,032

          4.3%

          Reading city

          81,201

          72,685

          89.5%

          2,607

          3.2%

          5,909

          7.3%

          8,516

          10.5%

          Albany township

          1,662

          1,636

          98.4%

          13

          0.8%

          13

          0.8%

          26

          1.6%

          Alsace township

          3,689

          3,616

          98.0%

          53

          1.4%

          20

          0.5%

          73

          2.0%

          Amity township

          8,841

          8,646

          97.8%

          159

          1.8%

          36

          0.4%

          195

          2.2%

          Bally borough

          1,062

          1,049

          98.8%

          13

          1.2%

          0

          0.0%

          13

          1.2%

          Bechtelsville borough

          930

          913

          98.2%

          17

          1.8%

          0

          0.0%

          17

          1.8%

          Bern township

          6,757

          6,473

          95.8%

          97

          1.4%

          187

          2.8%

          284

          4.2%

          Bernville borough

          900

          893

          99.2%

          2

          0.2%

          5

          0.6%

          7

          0.8%

          Bethel township

          4,166

          4,095

          98.3%

          28

          0.7%

          43

          1.0%

          71

          1.7%

          Birdsboro borough

          5,064

          4,976

          98.3%

          63

          1.2%

          25

          0.5%

          88

          1.7%

          Boyertown borough

          3,940

          3,909

          99.2%

          18

          0.5%

          13

          0.3%

          31

          0.8%

          Brecknock township

          4,459

          4,374

          98.1%

          49

          1.1%

          36

          0.8%

          85

          1.9%

          Caernarvon township

          2,312

          2,261

          97.8%

          28

          1.2%

          23

          1.0%

          51

          2.2%

          Centerport borough

          327

          323

          98.8%

          0

          0.0%

          4

          1.2%

          4

          1.2%

          Centre township

          3,598

          3,536

          98.3%

          55

          1.5%

          7

          0.2%

          62

          1.7%

          Colebrookdale township

          5,270

          5,207

          98.8%

          44

          0.8%

          19

          0.4%

          63

          1.2%

          Cumru township

          13,822

          13,186

          95.4%

          327

          2.4%

          309

          2.2%

          636

          4.6%

          District township

          1,449

          1,433

          98.9%

          13

          0.9%

          3

          0.2%

          16

          1.1%

          Douglass township

          3,311

          3,228

          97.5%

          48

          1.4%

          35

          1.1%

          83

          2.5%

          Earl township

          3,066

          3,013

          98.3%

          27

          0.9%

          26

          0.8%

          53

          1.7%

          Exeter township

          21,187

          20,704

          97.7%

          300

          1.4%

          183

          0.9%

          483

          2.3%

          Fleetwood borough

          4,018

          3,940

          98.1%

          58

          1.4%

          20

          0.5%

          78

          1.9%

          Greenwich township

          3,386

          3,321

          98.1%

          51

          1.5%

          14

          0.4%

          65

          1.9%

          Hamburg borough

          4,114

          4,087

          99.3%

          20

          0.5%

          7

          0.2%

          27

          0.7%

          Heidelberg township

          1,636

          1,611

          98.5%

          12

          0.7%

          13

          0.8%

          25

          1.5%

          Hereford township

          3,169

          3,139

          99.1%

          27

          0.9%

          3

          0.1%

          30

          0.9%

          Jefferson township

          1,604

          1,574

          98.1%

          25

          1.6%

          5

          0.3%

          30

          1.9%

          Kenhorst borough

          2,662

          2,608

          98.0%

          54

          2.0%

          0

          0.0%

          54

          2.0%

          Kutztown borough

          5,067

          4,915

          97.0%

          45

          0.9%

          107

          2.1%

          152

          3.0%

          Laureldale borough

          3,779

          3,708

          98.1%

          38

          1.0%

          33

          0.9%

          71

          1.9%

          Leesport borough

          1,806

          1,780

          98.6%

          19

          1.1%

          7

          0.4%

          26

          1.4%

          Lenhartsville borough

          173

          167

          96.5%

          0

          0.0%

          6

          3.5%

          6

          3.5%

          Longswamp township

          5,612

          5,570

          99.3%

          34

          0.6%

          8

          0.1%

          42

          0.7%

          Lower Alsace township

          4,469

          4,355

          97.4%

          72

          1.6%

          42

          0.9%

          114

          2.6%

          Lower Heidelberg township

          4,300

          4,095

          95.2%

          93

          2.2%

          112

          2.6%

          205

          4.8%

          Lyons borough

          454

          450

          99.1%

          2

          0.4%

          2

          0.4%

          4

          0.9%

          Maidencreek township

          6,549

          6,288

          96.0%

          163

          2.5%

          98

          1.5%

          261

          4.0%

          Marion township

          1,573

          1,567

          99.6%

          6

          0.4%

          0

          0.0%

          6

          0.4%

          Maxatawny township

          6,032

          5,932

          98.3%

          50

          0.8%

          50

          0.8%

          100

          1.7%

          Mohnton borough

          2,963

          2,927

          98.8%

          36

          1.2%

          0

          0.0%

          36

          1.2%

          Mount Penn borough

          3,025

          2,901

          95.9%

          110

          3.6%

          14

          0.5%

          124

          4.1%

          Muhlenberg township

          16,285

          15,844

          97.3%

          261

          1.6%

          180

          1.1%

          441

          2.7%

          New Morgan borough

          35

          30

          85.7%

          0

          0.0%

          5

          14.3%

          5

          14.3%

          North Heidelberg township

          1,325

          1,293

          97.6%

          15

          1.1%

          17

          1.3%

          32

          2.4%

          Oley township

          3,583

          3,525

          98.4%

          58

          1.6%

          0

          0.0%

          58

          1.6%

          Ontelaunee township

          1,221

          1,190

          97.5%

          17

          1.4%

          14

          1.1%

          31

          2.5%

          Penn township

          1,958

          1,929

          98.5%

          18

          0.9%

          11

          0.6%

          29

          1.5%

          Perry township

          2,463

          2,447

          99.4%

          11

          0.4%

          5

          0.2%

          16

          0.6%

          Pike township

          1,677

          1,642

          97.9%

          28

          1.7%

          7

          0.4%

          35

          2.1%

          Richmond township

          3,554

          3,510

          98.8%

          26

          0.7%

          18

          0.5%

          44

          1.2%

          Robeson township

          6,869

          6,743

          98.2%

          67

          1.0%

          59

          0.9%

          126

          1.8%

          Robesonia borough

          2,036

          1,975

          97.0%

          46

          2.3%

          15

          0.7%

          61

          3.0%

          Rockland township

          3,765

          3,685

          97.9%

          46

          1.2%

          34

          0.9%

          80

          2.1%

          Ruscombmanor township

          3,776

          3,711

          98.3%

          50

          1.3%

          15

          0.4%

          65

          1.7%

          St. Lawrence borough

          1,812

          1,729

          95.4%

          25

          1.4%

          58

          3.2%

          83

          4.6%

          Shillington borough

          5,059

          4,944

          97.7%

          45

          0.9%

          70

          1.4%

          115

          2.3%

          Shoemakersville borough

          2,124

          1,970

          92.7%

          37

          1.7%

          117

          5.5%

          154

          7.3%

          Sinking Spring borough

          2,598

          2,499

          96.2%

          73

          2.8%

          26

          1.0%

          99

          3.8%

          South Heidelberg township

          5,491

          5,381

          98.0%

          68

          1.2%

          42

          0.8%

          110

          2.0%

          Spring township

          21,805

          20,939

          96.0%

          552

          2.5%

          314

          1.4%

          866

          4.0%

          Strausstown borough

          303

          299

          98.7%

          4

          1.3%

          0

          0.0%

          4

          1.3%

          Tilden township

          3,586

          3,484

          97.2%

          85

          2.4%

          17

          0.5%

          102

          2.8%

          Topton borough

          1,944

          1,936

          99.6%

          8

          0.4%

          0

          0.0%

          8

          0.4%

          Tulpehocken township

          3,290

          3,190

          97.0%

          50

          1.5%

          50

          1.5%

          100

          3.0%

          Union township

          3,453

          3,382

          97.9%

          23

          0.7%

          48

          1.4%

          71

          2.1%

          Upper Bern township

          1,479

          1,467

          99.2%

          4

          0.3%

          8

          0.5%

          12

          0.8%

          Upper Tulpehocken township

          1,531

          1,518

          99.2%

          6

          0.4%

          7

          0.5%

          13

          0.8%

          Washington township

          3,360

          3,325

          99.0%

          18

          0.5%

          17

          0.5%

          35

          1.0%

          Wernersville borough

          2,000

          1,966

          98.3%

          24

          1.2%

          10

          0.5%

          34

          1.7%

          West Lawn borough

          1,597

          1,560

          97.7%

          30

          1.9%

          7

          0.4%

          37

          2.3%

          West Reading borough

          4,107

          3,897

          94.9%

          139

          3.4%

          71

          1.7%

          210

          5.1%

          Windsor township

          2,392

          2,380

          99.5%

          12

          0.5%

          0

          0.0%

          12

          0.5%

          Womelsdorf borough

          2,599

          2,558

          98.4%

          16

          0.6%

          25

          1.0%

          41

          1.6%

          Wyomissing borough

          8,587

          8,246

          96.0%

          190

          2.2%

          151

          1.8%

          341

          4.0%

          Wyomissing Hills borough

          2,568

          2,319

          90.3%

          188

          7.3%

          61

          2.4%

          249

          9.7%

          Source: U.S. Census Bureau: American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates 2008- 2012 (B05002)


          1. Family Households and Female-Headed Households

            The Census Bureau divides households into family and non-family households. Family households include married couples, families with or without children, single parent families, and other families made up of related persons. Non- family households are either single persons living alone, or two or more non- related persons living together.

            In the boroughs and townships of Berks County, there were 103,312 family households in 2012. Of the 151,291 total households, 18,978 were female- headed households. Female-headed households increased by 1.4% from 2007


            to 2012. The number of male headed households showed an increase as well. In 2007, male households were at 4.9% but increased to 5.4% by 2012.

            Figure 2-8

            Trends in Household Types – 2000 to 2012


            2000

            2007

            2012

            #

            %

            #

            %

            #

            %

            Total Households

            141,570

            100.0%

            149,410

            100.0%

            151,291

            100%

            Family Households

            98,463

            69.6%

            104,612

            70.0%

            103,312

            68.3%

            Married Couple Households

            78,517

            55.5%

            80,661

            54.0%

            76,132

            50.3%

            With children

            33,370

            23.6%

            35,026

            23.4%

            28,503

            18.8%

            Without children

            45,147

            31.9%

            45,635

            30.5%

            47,629

            31.5%

            Female-Headed Households

            14,038

            9.9%

            16,609

            11.1%

            18,978

            12.5%

            With children

            8,218

            5.8%

            12,201

            8.2%

            11,159

            7.4%

            Without children

            5,820

            4.1%

            4,408

            3.0%

            7,819

            5.2%

            Male-Headed Households

            5,908

            4.2%

            7,342

            4.9%

            8,202

            5.4%

            With children

            3,273

            2.3%

            4,039

            2.7%

            4,353

            2.9%

            Without children

            2,635

            1.9%

            3,303

            2.2%

            3,849

            2.5%

            Non-Family and 1-person Households


            43,107


            30.4%


            44,798


            30.0%


            47,979


            31.7%

            Average Household Size

            2.55

            --

            2.61

            --

            2.65

            --

            Sources: U.S. Census Bureau and American Community Survey 1 year estimates 2012 (DP-02)


            As chart 2-8 demonstrates family households decreased from 2007 to 2012 by 1.7%. Married households decreased by 3.7% and married households without children experienced the largest decrease from 23.4% in 2007 to 18.8% in 2012 (which is a 4.6% decrease).


            Figure 2-9


            Source: U.S. Census Bureau

            image


            In 2010- 2012 there were 31,000 households in the City of Reading , with the average household size of 2.8 people.

            Families account for 63% of city households which includes married couples (29%) and other families (35%). 19% are female headed households with no husband present but children are in the home. Non-family households made up 37% of all city households. Some of the nonfamily households were people living alone however some households were comprised of non- related people living together.

            Additionally 43% of all city households had one or more people under the age of 18 and 21% had one or more people over the age of 65 years.

            The data contained in Figure 2-10 is for the townships and boroughs in the County of Berks. The chart demonstrates that married couples are the majority of households across all categories.


            Female headed households, Hispanic households are at 31.3%, followed by some other Race alone (31%) then Black households at 19.6% followed by White households at (11.2%).


            Figure 2-10



            >

            image


            Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Census 1year estimate 2012



          2. Disability Status

            The Census Bureau reports disability status for non-institutionalized disabled persons age 5 and over. As defined by the Census Bureau, a disability is a long-lasting physical, mental, or emotional condition. This condition can make it difficult for a person to do activities such as walking, climbing stairs, dressing, bathing, learning, or remembering. This condition can also impede a person from being able to go outside the home alone or to work at a job or business.

            Discrimination based on physical, mental or emotional handicap, provided “reasonable accommodation” can be made, is prohibited under the Fair Housing Act. Reasonable accommodation may include changes to address the needs of disabled persons and may include adaptive structural changes as well as administrative changes, provided these changes can reasonably be made.

            Berks County, had 405,986 non-institutionalized persons age 5 years and older between the years of 2008 through 2012. Of these, 52,021 or 13% had at least one disability.

            Twenty-six municipalities had rates that were the same or higher than the rate of disabled persons than the County overall. These communities are highlighted in bold italics in the following table.



            Figure 2-11

            Persons with Disabilities – 2008 – 2012


            Civilian Non- institutionalized Population 5 years and older

            With one or more disabilities


            Percent

            Berks County

            405,986

            52,021

            13%

            Reading city

            87,523

            16,452

            19%

            Albany township

            1,549

            153

            9%

            Alsace township

            3709

            533

            14%

            Amity township

            12,462

            1,165

            9%

            Bally borough

            1,270

            135

            11%

            Bechtelsville borough

            896

            101

            11%

            Bern township

            4,614

            625

            14%

            Bernville borough

            918

            142

            16%

            Bethel township

            4,131

            363

            9%

            Birdsboro borough

            5,168

            613

            12%

            Boyertown borough

            4,055

            721

            18%

            Brecknock township

            4,603

            418

            9%

            Caernarvon township

            3,926

            298

            8%

            Centerport borough

            481

            57

            12%

            Centre township

            4,030

            465

            12%

            Colebrookdale township

            5,108

            574

            11%

            Cumru township

            14,934

            1,981

            13%

            District township

            1,272

            138

            11%

            Douglass township

            3,228

            378

            12%

            Earl township

            3,194

            523

            16%

            Exeter township

            25,131

            2,112

            8%

            Fleetwood borough

            4,102

            512

            13%

            Greenwich township

            3,717

            380

            10%

            Hamburg borough

            4,276

            612

            14%

            Heidelberg township

            1,606

            168

            11%

            Hereford township

            3,006

            722

            24%

            Jefferson township

            2,110

            195

            9%

            Kenhorst borough

            2,872

            361

            13%

            Kutztown borough

            4,884

            399

            8%

            Laureldale borough

            3,916

            565

            14%

            Leesport borough

            1,948

            210

            11%

            Lenhartsville borough

            191

            20

            11%

            Longswamp township

            5,619

            618

            11%

            Lower Alsace township

            4,488

            492

            11%

            Lower Heidelberg township

            5,481

            491

            9%

            Lyons borough

            404

            101

            25%

            Maidencreek township

            9,059

            722

            8%

            Marion township

            1,723

            181

            11%

            Maxatawny township

            7,892

            532

            7%

            Mohnton borough

            3,033

            379

            13%

            Mount Penn borough

            3,119

            339

            11%

            Muhlenberg township

            19,369

            2,294

            12%

            New Morgan borough

            28

            5

            18%

            North Heidelberg township

            1,198

            115

            10%

            Oley township

            3,641

            294

            8%

            Ontelaunee township

            1,625

            208

            13%

            Penn township

            2,011

            189

            10%

            Perry township

            2,332

            374

            16%

            Pike township

            1,996

            175

            9%

            Richmond township

            3,403

            437

            13%

            Robeson township

            7,228

            719

            10%

            Robesonia borough

            2,070

            163

            8%

            Rockland township

            3,782

            366

            10%

            Ruscombmanor township

            4,087

            300

            7%

            St. Lawrence borough

            1,811

            211

            12%

            Shillington borough

            5,272

            497

            9%

            Shoemakersville borough

            1,403

            237

            17%

            Sinking Spring borough

            3,947

            494

            13%

            South Heidelberg township

            7,166

            918

            13%

            Spring township

            26,916

            2,801

            10%

            Strausstown borough

            299

            31

            10%

            Tilden township

            3,466

            429

            12%

            Topton borough

            1,846

            187

            10%

            Tulpehocken township

            3,264

            359

            11%

            Union township

            3,513

            433

            12%

            Upper Bern township

            1,491

            170

            11%

            Upper Tulpehocken township

            1,658

            192

            12%

            Washington township

            3,830

            568

            15%

            Wernersville borough

            2,275

            334

            15%

            West Reading borough

            3,781

            528

            14%

            Windsor township

            2,436

            367

            15%

            Womelsdorf borough

            2,800

            286

            10%

            Wyomissing borough

            10,394

            1,394

            13%

            Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Census 2008 - 2012


        2. Income Data

          1. Median Household Income

            In 2012, the median household income (MHI) in Berks County was $55,170 compared to the MHI of $26,777 for City of Reading residents.

            As shown in the following table, Black, some other Race alone and Hispanic households generally have lower incomes than White households. In the lowest income category (under $24,999) these three groups had the highest percentages (52%, 54% and 49% respectively). The category where incomes are similar to each other for all races noted in the chart is between $25,000 and $49,999. As the chart demonstrates Whites were at 25%, Blacks at 27%, some other Race alone 24% and Hispanics 26%.

            In 2011, the City of Reading was named as having the largest share of residents living in poverty in all U.S. cities with a population of 65,000 or more. A total of 41.3% of city residents and 13.7% of county residents were considered impoverished. In 2013 that number decreased slightly to 40.5 % in the City but rose to 14.6% in the county.

            Figure 2-12

            Household Income by Race and Ethnicity – 2012


            White

            Black

            Some Other Race

            Hispanic

            Number of Households

            134,062

            7,698

            5,810

            19,083

            % Households by Income

            $0 to $24,999

            20%

            52%

            54%

            49%

            $25,000 to $49,999

            25%

            27%

            24%

            26%

            $50,000 to $74,999

            20%

            13%

            15%

            11%

            $75,000 and higher

            35%

            8%

            7%

            14%

            *Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islanders and American Indians/Alaskan Natives were not included due to small populations


            Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Census 2012

            In the higher income categories, the percentage drops significantly for Blacks, Hispanics and some other race alone. Whites account for 35% of persons with incomes at $75,000 or above whereas Blacks, some other race alone and Hispanics do not together total 35% (Blacks 8%, some other Race 7% and Hispanics 14%).

            The differences in incomes across racial/ethnic groups could be part of the explanation for the un-intentional ethnic minority concentration patterns observed in Berks County. Since such large shares of minority and Hispanic households have lower incomes, they may not be able to afford to live in many areas of the county outside of Reading where more whites can afford to live.

            ii. Low and Moderate Income Persons

          The following table outlines the percentage of low and moderate income (LMI) persons in the County by census block group. This information is calculated by HUD to determine area eligibility for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program. Persons deemed low-moderate income have incomes at or below 80% of the area median income level. HUD’s formula for calculating low


          and moderate income persons includes persons residing in households and excludes persons residing in group quarters.1

          Based on the 2000 census data, HUD determined that there were 144,399 low and moderate income persons in Berks County, equivalent to 40% of the population for which this rate is calculated.

          Reading contains 54,109 (37%) of the county’s LMI population, and 68% of the population in Reading for which this rate is calculated is low and moderate income. By block group, there are some areas in the county where the concentration of LMI persons is even higher. With the exception of block groups with small populations (less than 300 persons per block group), the

          majority of the block groups with the highest concentrations of LMI persons are located in Reading. In Reading, there is a correlation between census tracts with concentrations of minorities and those with high concentrations of LMI persons and a correlation between census tracts with concentrations of Hispanics and those with high concentrations of LMI persons.


          1 The group quarter population includes persons under formally authorized supervised care or custody such as correctional institutions, nursing homes, and juvenile institutions. The group quarter population also includes non- institutionalized persons living in group quarters such as college dormitories, military quarters, and group homes.


          Figure 2-12

          Low-Moderate Income Block Group Areas by Municipality – 2000


          tract

          blkgrp

          lowmod

          lowmoduniv

          lowmod_pct


          000100


          1


          1,480


          1,490


          99.33%


          000100


          2


          1,080


          1,200


          90.00%


          000100


          3


          550


          625


          88.00%


          000100


          4


          475


          475


          100.00%


          000100


          5


          935


          1,040


          89.90%


          000200


          1


          1,140


          1,665


          68.47%


          000200


          2


          340


          530


          64.15%


          000200


          3


          1,570


          1,980


          79.29%


          000300


          1


          550


          935


          58.82%


          000300


          2


          465


          930


          50.00%


          000400


          1


          1,385


          1,735


          79.83%


          000400


          2


          635


          970


          65.46%


          000400


          3


          875


          1,040


          84.13%


          000500


          1


          680


          1,150


          59.13%


          000500


          2


          790


          1,385


          57.04%


          000500


          3


          705


          1,160


          60.78%


          000600


          1


          330


          595


          55.46%


          000600


          2


          660


          1,835


          35.97%


          000700


          1


          710


          1,150


          61.74%


          000700


          2


          545


          1,385


          39.35%


          000700


          3


          785


          1,075


          73.02%


          000800


          1


          1,070


          1,820


          58.79%


          000800


          2


          1,425


          1,575


          90.48%


          000800


          3


          615


          920


          66.85%


          000900


          1


          1,295


          2,085


          62.11%


          000900


          2


          495


          670


          73.88%


          001000


          1


          1,140


          1,470


          77.55%


          001000


          2


          1,115


          1,605


          69.47%


          001100


          1


          1,635


          1,915


          85.38%


          001100


          2


          580


          690


          84.06%


          001100


          3


          1,750


          1,905


          91.86%


          001200


          1


          560


          585


          95.73%


          001200


          2


          545


          725


          75.17%


          001300


          1


          810


          955


          84.82%

          001300

          2

          73.61%


          001300


          3


          325


          355


          91.55%


          001400


          1


          890


          1,030


          86.41%


          001400


          2


          750


          1,165


          64.38%


          001400


          3


          850


          1,020


          83.33%


          001400


          4


          1,135


          1,185


          95.78%


          001500


          1


          1,375


          1,635


          84.10%


          001500


          2


          1,315


          1,585


          82.97%


          001500


          3


          655


          870


          75.29%


          001600


          1


          1,135


          1,420


          79.93%


          001600


          2


          835


          1,520


          54.93%


          001700


          1


          1,710


          2,205


          77.55%


          001700


          2


          945


          985


          95.94%


          001800


          1


          730


          1,485


          49.16%


          001800


          2


          1,180


          1,720


          68.60%


          001900


          1


          875


          935


          93.58%


          001900


          2


          1,085


          1,315


          82.51%


          002000


          1


          800


          1,200


          66.67%


          002000


          2


          1,265


          1,615


          78.33%


          002000


          3


          945


          1,440


          65.63%


          002100


          1


          495


          970


          51.03%


          002100


          2


          1,035


          1,135


          91.19%


          002100


          3


          720


          890


          80.90%


          002200


          1


          610


          785


          77.71%


          002200


          2


          1,055


          1,220


          86.48%


          002300


          1


          835


          945


          88.36%


          002300


          2


          655


          1,010


          64.85%


          002500


          1


          425


          540


          78.70%


          002500


          2


          1,320


          2,045


          64.55%


          002500


          3


          520


          795


          65.41%


          002600


          1


          445


          745


          59.73%


          002600


          2


          2,205


          2,415


          91.30%


          002700


          1


          225


          610


          36.89%


          002700


          2


          615


          1,280


          48.05%


          002900


          1


          1,095


          2,195


          49.89%


          61,305


          84,255


          72.76%

          Source: U.S. Dept. of Housing & Urban Development


          1. Employment Data

            1. Civilian Labor Force

              In 2000, the unemployment rate for Berks County was 5.1%. In 2012, that rate climbed to 9.9% which is slightly higher than the 8.5% rate of unemployment for the State. Unemployment rates were lowest among Whites in both the county and the State. The highest unemployment was experienced by Blacks, where it was more than triple the unemployment rate among Whites. Unemployment rates of whites, Hispanics, and persons of some other race alone closely resembled those of the State. The rate of Black unemployment was 9% higher than that of the State.




              Figure 2-13 Civilian Labor Force – 2012


              image


              Persons 16 yrs. and older in Civilian Labor Force




              ACS 2010

              image


              Civilian Employed Population aged 16 yrs.




          2. Housing Data

            1. Cost of Housing

              The median housing value in Berks County increased 35% between 1990 and 2007, when adjusted for inflation. This was in stark contrast to the median gross rent, which increased only slightly since 1990, when adjusted for inflation. During the same period, median household income, adjusted for inflation, remained relatively constant.


              ACS 2010


              image


              Owner-occupied units



              Berks County lost a substantial number of affordable rental units since 2000. Between 2000 and 2007, the number of affordable rental units renting for less than $500 per month decreased by 7,020 and the number of those renting for between $500 and $749 per month also decreased. At the same time, the number of units with higher rents between $750 and $999 more than doubled and those with rents higher than $1,000 per month more than tripled.




              ACS 2010


              image





              Census 2010


              Renter Occupancy Rates, 1990, 2000, 2010


              image

              Lack of affordable housing does constrain housing choice. Residents may be limited to a smaller selection of neighborhoods or municipalities because of a lack of affordable housing in those areas. Residents also have to take into consideration such things as access to transportation (bus routes and cabs).

              Occupied Housing




            2. Home Ownership

              The overall home ownership rate in Berks County was 74% in 2000. Of the total 104,693 homeowners, 99,371 (95%) were white households. Racial and ethnic minority homeowners numbered only 5,322, comprising 5% of all homeowners even though they constitute 11.8% of the population.

              Households headed by blacks, Hispanics, and persons of some other race alone own their homes at a much lower rate than white households. Among all housing units occupied by white householders, 77% were owner-occupied. For blacks, the rate was only 43%, and only 34% of some other race households and 37% of Hispanic households are homeowners.

              With the exception of Douglass Township, where 4% of homeowners are black, and Reading, where 77% of homeowners are white, blacks, Hispanics, and persons of some other race as groups do not comprise more than 3% of the homeowners in any municipality in Berks County. As previously explained,



              40

              Reading also contains the highest percentage of minority and Hispanic residents.

              Figure 2-17

              Home Ownership by Race/Ethnicity of Household – 2010


              Percent Owner-Occupied Units

              Owner Occupied

              Units

              White

              Black

              Some Other Race

              Hispanics

              Pennsylvania

              3,491,722

              1%


              Berks County

              110,653

              92.4%

              2.5%

              3%

              2%

              Reading city

              12,703

              64%

              11%

              19%

              6%

              Albany township

              549

              99%

              1%

              0%

              0%

              Alsace township

              1,327

              99%

              0.4%

              0%

              .6%

              Amity township

              3,626

              94%

              3%

              0.3%

              2.7%

              Bally borough

              331

              100%

              0%

              0%

              0%

              Bechtelsville borough

              264

              100%

              0%

              0%

              0%

              Bern township

              1,834

              96%

              1%

              0.6%

              2.94%

              Bernville borough

              238

              97%

              1%

              1%

              1%

              Bethel township

              1,145

              97%

              0.6%

              0.6%

              2.88%

              Birdsboro borough

              1,432

              98%

              1%

              0.3%

              .97%

              Boyertown borough

              938

              99%

              0.1%

              0%

              .9%


              Brecknock township

              1,517

              98%

              1%

              0.1%

              .9%

              Caernarvon township

              1,205

              96%

              2%

              0.2%

              1.8%

              Centerport borough

              91

              98%

              1%

              1%

              0%

              Centre township

              1,368

              99%

              0.4%

              0.2%

              .4%

              Colebrookdale township

              1,709

              99%

              .05%

              .3%

              .65%

              Cumru township

              4,533

              96%

              1.4%

              0.6%

              2%

              District township

              461

              99%

              .4%

              0%

              .6%

              Douglass township

              1,138

              96%

              4%

              .08%

              0%

              Earl township

              1,073

              99%

              .6%

              .1%

              .3%

              Exeter township

              8,329

              95%

              3%

              .5%

              1.5%

              Fleetwood borough

              1,269

              98%

              .5%

              .5%

              1%

              Greenwich township

              1,219

              98%

              .4%

              .5%

              1.1%

              Hamburg borough

              1,177

              98%

              .5%

              .6%

              .9%

              Heidelberg township

              525

              98%

              1%

              .2%

              .8%

              Hereford township

              1,069

              98%

              .1%

              1%

              .9%

              Jefferson township

              645

              97%

              2%

              .3%

              .7%

              Kenhorst borough

              1,049

              94%

              2%

              2%

              2%

              Kutztown borough

              972

              98%

              .4%

              .2%

              1.4%

              Laureldale borough

              1,314

              92%

              2%

              5%

              1%

              Leesport borough

              596

              97%

              2%

              .7%

              .3%

              Lenhartsville borough

              43

              100%

              0%

              0%

              0%

              Longswamp township

              1,813

              98%

              .3%

              .2%

              1.5%

              Lower Alsace township

              1,406

              96%

              1%

              1%

              2%

              Lower Heidelberg township

              1,690

              95%

              2%

              .8%

              2.2%

              Lyons borough

              121

              98%

              0%

              .8%

              1.2%

              Maidencreek township

              2,814

              95%

              2%

              1%

              2%

              Marion township

              501

              99%

              0%

              1%

              0%

              Maxatawny township

              1,071

              99%

              .09%

              .09%

              .82%

              Mohnton borough

              925

              97%

              .6%

              .4%

              2%

              Mount Penn borough

              884

              93%

              2%

              2%

              3%

              Muhlenberg township

              6,153

              92%

              3%

              3%

              2%

              New Morgan borough

              0

              0

              0

              0

              0%


              North Heidelberg township

              433

              98%

              .2%

              .5%

              1.3%

              Oley township

              1,097

              99%

              .2%

              .2%

              .6%

              Ontelaunee township

              526

              92%

              4%

              2%

              2%

              Penn township

              682

              97%

              .6%

              .7%

              1.7%

              Perry township

              810

              99%

              .3%

              .4%

              .3%

              Pike township

              587

              98%

              .2%

              0

              1.8%

              Richmond township

              1,034

              99%

              .2%

              0

              .8%

              Robeson township

              2,328

              99%

              .3%

              .04%

              .66%

              Robesonia borough

              621

              97%

              1%

              1%

              1%

              Rockland township

              1,308

              98%

              .2%

              0

              1.8%

              Ruscombmanor township

              1,404

              99%

              .4%

              .07%

              .53%

              St. Lawrence borough

              522

              97%

              1%

              .7%

              1.3%

              Shillington borough

              1,688

              95%

              1%

              1%

              3%

              Shoemakersville borough

              403

              98%

              0%

              1%

              1%

              Sinking Spring borough

              1,008

              93%

              2%

              1%

              4%

              South Heidelberg township

              2,288

              95%

              2%

              .7%

              2.3%

              Spring township

              8,309

              94%

              2%

              1%

              3%

              Strausstown borough

              98

              100%

              0

              0

              0%

              Tilden township

              1,129

              98%

              .3%

              .6%

              1.1%

              Topton borough

              575

              98%

              .3%

              .2%