DORCHESTER COUNTY
Date Formed:  1897
Land Area (square miles): 575
County Seat: St. George
Other Cities and Towns: Harleyville, North Charleston, Reevesville, Ridgeville, Summerville
Form of Government: Council-Administrator
Council Members: 7
Method of Election: Single Member
Term Length: 4 years
Council of Government:  Berkeley-Charleston-Dorchester
County History
Dorchester County was named for Dorchester, Massachusetts. In 1696, Congregationalists from that town moved south and established a new settlement called Dorchester. Although the town of Dorchester had been abandoned by 1788, the parish in which it was located continued to be referred to as St. George Dorchester. This name was subsequently adopted for the county when it was formed from parts of Colleton and Berkeley counties in 1897. The town of Summerville was settled in the late eighteenth century as a summer resort for planters who wished to escape the malaria prevalent on their rice plantations; the town later became a winter resort also. Middleton Place Gardens, the remains of an old rice plantation, are the oldest landscaped gardens in the country, having been laid out in 1741. Middleton Place was the home of Henry Middleton (1717-1784), President of the Continental Congress, his son Arthur Middleton (1742-1787), a signer of the Declaration of Independence, and his grandson Henry Middleton (1770-1846), South Carolina Governor, United States Congressman, and Ambassador to Russia.
Population Trends Value Rank Value Rank
Census Population 1990 83,060 16 Numeric Change Census 1990-2010 53,495 9
Census Population 2000 96,413 15 Percent Change Census 1990-2010 64.4% 4
Census Population 2010 136,555 13 Numeric Change Pop. Est. 2010-2015 15,923 9
Population Estimate 2014 148,422 12 Percent Change Pop. Est. 2014-2015 10.7% 5
Population Estimate 2015 152,478 12 Avg. Annual Growth Rate 2010 - 2015 2.3% 5
Persons Per Square Mile 237.5 10
Economic Data Value Rank Value Rank
Jobs 2014 36,749 17 Personal Income 2014, in thousands $4,929,019 13
Jobs 2013 36,014 17 Avg. Annual Growth Rate, 1969 - 2014 9.1% 1
Jobs 2012 31,213 16 Per Capita Personal Income 2014 $33,199 19
Jobs 2000 29,110 17 % of U.S. Per Cap Personal Income 2014 72.1% 19
Jobs 1990 22,567 19 Average Wage Per Job 2015 $35,039 34
Avg. Ann. Growth Rate Jobs 1990-2010 1.9% 7 % of U.S. Avg. Wage Per Job 2015 66.2% 34
Percent Change Jobs 2012-2014 2.1% 18 Unemployment Rate 2015 5.4% 38
Numeric Change Jobs 2013-2014 735 18
Tax Data Value Value
Assessed Property 2013 $527,516,274 Per Capita Assessed Property 2013 $3,863
County Base Millage Rate 2015 0.0838 Additional Sales Tax, if applicable:
Value of One Mil 2015 $496,628 Local Option  
Net Taxable Sales FY14 $673,428,294 Capital Projects  
State Admissions Tax FY14 $302,750 School District  
State Accommodations Tax Collected FY14 $147,802 Transportation 1.0%
Edu. Capital Improvement  
County Finance & Employment Data Value Value
Total Revenues FY14 $83,816,678 Per Capita Revenues FY14 $614
Total Expenditures FY14 $123,182,071 Per Capita Expenditures FY14 $902
General Fund Budget FY16 $48,904,528 Per Capita Gen. Fund Budget FY16 $358
Total Debt Outstanding FY15 $172,125,915 Per Capita Debt Outstanding FY15 $1,260
Payroll FY16 $31,444,861 Credit Rating(s) FY13, if applicable:
Full-Time Employees FY16 855 Moody's Aa2
Part-Time Employees FY16 164 Standard & Poor's AA-
Full-Time Emp/1,000 Cnty Residents 6.26 Fitch