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Monroe County is a county in the Finger Lakes region of New York, in the United States. The county is along Lake Ontario's southern shore. As of 2019, Monroe County's population was 741,770, a decrease since the 2010 census. Its county seat and largest city is the city of Rochester. The county is named after James Monroe, the fifth President of the United States. Monroe County is part of the Rochester, NY Metropolitan Statistical Area. The current County Executive is Adam Bello.

When counties were established in the Province of New York in 1683, the present Monroe County was part of Albany County. This was an enormous county, including the northern part of New York State as well as all of the present State of Vermont and, in theory, extending westward to the Pacific Ocean. This county was reduced in size on July 3, 1766 by the creation of Cumberland County, and further on March 16, 1770 by the creation of Gloucester County, both containing territory now in Vermont.

On March 12, 1772, what was left of Albany County was split into three parts, one remaining under the name Albany County. One of the other pieces, Tryon County, contained the western portion (and thus, since no western boundary was specified, theoretically still extended west to the Pacific). The eastern boundary of Tryon County was approximately five miles west of the present city of Schenectady, and the county included the western part of the Adirondack Mountains and the area west of the West Branch of the Delaware River. The area then designated as Tryon County now includes 37 counties of New York State. The county was named for William Tryon, colonial governor of New York.

In the years prior to 1776, most of the Loyalists in Tryon County fled to Canada. In 1784, following the peace treaty that ended the American Revolutionary War, the name of Tryon County was changed to Montgomery County in order to honor the general, Richard Montgomery, who had captured several places in Canada and died attempting to capture the city of Quebec, replacing the name of the hated British governor.

In 1789, Ontario County was split off from Montgomery. The actual area split off from Montgomery County was much larger than the present county, also including the present Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Niagara, Orleans, Steuben, Wyoming, Yates, and part of Schuyler and Wayne counties.

Genesee County was created by a splitting of Ontario County in 1802. This was much larger than the present Genesee County, however. It contained the present Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Niagara, Orleans, Wyoming, and portions of Livingston and Monroe counties.

Finally, Monroe County was formed from parts of Genesee and Ontario counties in 1821.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county's total area is 1,367 square miles (3,540 km2), of which 657 square miles (1,700 km2) is land and 710 square miles (1,800 km2) (52%) is water.

Monroe County is in Western New York State's northern tier, northeast of Buffalo and northwest of Syracuse. The northern county line is also the state line and the border of the United States, marked by Lake Ontario. Monroe County is north of the Finger Lakes.

Adjacent counties
Wayne County - east
Ontario County - southeast
Livingston County - south
Orleans County - west
Genesee County - southwest
Major highways
I-90 / New York Thruway
NY-15.svg New York State Route 15
NY-15A.svg New York State Route 15A
NY-18.svg New York State Route 18
NY-19.svg New York State Route 19
NY-31.svg New York State Route 31
NY-31F.svg New York State Route 31F
NY-33.svg New York State Route 33
NY-33A.svg New York State Route 33A
NY-36.svg New York State Route 36
NY-64.svg New York State Route 64
NY-65.svg New York State Route 65
NY-96.svg New York State Route 96
NY-104.svg New York State Route 104
NY-153.svg New York State Route 153
NY-250.svg New York State Route 250
NY-251.svg New York State Route 251
NY-252.svg New York State Route 252
NY-259.svg New York State Route 259
NY-286.svg New York State Route 286
NY-390.svg New York State Route 390
NY-404.svg New York State Route 404
NY-441.svg New York State Route 441
NY-531.svg New York State Route 531
NY-590.svg New York State Route 590
Lake Ontario State Pkwy Shield.svg Lake Ontario State Parkway
Government and politics
Presidential election results
County government

This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (August 2008)
Monroe County was chartered as a municipal corporation by the New York State Legislature in 1892 and re-chartered under New York's Municipal Home Rule Law in 1965.

Executive branch
The county's executive branch is headed by the County Executive, Adam Bello. The executive's office is on the first floor of the County Office Building on West Main Street in Rochester.

The county was exclusively governed by a Board of Supervisors for the first 114 years of its history. In 1935, the position of County Manager, appointed by the Board, was approved by popular referendum. In 1983, the position was replaced by a County Executive, directly elected by popular vote, with expanded powers (e.g., veto). In 1993, the legislature enacted term limits for the executive office of 12 consecutive years to start in 1996.

Monroe County Executives
Name Title Party Term
Clarence A. Smith County Manager Republican January 1, 1936 – December 31, 1959
Gordon A. Howe County Manager Republican January 1, 1960 – December 31, 1971
Lucien A. Morin County Manager
County Executive Republican January 18, 1972 – December 31, 1982
January 1, 1983 – December 31, 1986
Thomas R. Frey County Executive Democrat January 1, 1987 – December 31, 1991
Robert L. King County Executive Republican January 1, 1992 – January 14, 1995
John D. "Jack" Doyle County Executive Republican January 14, 1995 – December 31, 2003
Maggie Brooks County Executive Republican January 1, 2004 – December 31, 2015
Cheryl L. Dinolfo County Executive Republican January 1, 2016 – December 31, 2019
Adam J. Bello County Executive Democrat January 1, 2020 –
Legislative branch
The county's legislative branch consists of a 29-member County Legislature which replaced the earlier 43-member Board of Supervisors on January 1, 1967. It meets in the Legislative Chambers on the fourth floor of the County Office Building. All 29 members of the legislature are elected from districts. District Maps Currently, there are 15 Republicans and 14 Democrats, and the President of the Legislature is Dr. Joe Carbone. In 1993, the legislature enacted term limits of 10 consecutive years to start in 1996. Legislators can return to the office after not being in the Legislature for a term. Since the enacting of term limits, as of 2020 two Legislators (Karla Boyce and Calvin Lee, Jr.) returned after previously being term limited.

Judicial branch
Monroe County Court
Monroe County Family Court, for matters involving children
Monroe County Surrogates Court, for matters involving the deceased
Rochester City Court
Representation at the federal level
After redistricting based on the 2010 United States Census, Monroe County was split between two congressional districts:

District Areas of Monroe County Congressperson Party First took office Residence
New York's 25th congressional district All of Monroe County except those portions represented by the 27th district Joseph D. Morelle Democratic 2018 Irondequoit, Monroe County
New York's 27th congressional district Hamlin, Mendon, Rush, Wheatland, and the southwest corner of Clarkson Chris Jacobs Republican 2020 Buffalo, Erie County
Representation at the state level
New York State Senate
After redistricting based on the 2010 United States Census, Monroe County was split between six state senate districts:

District Areas of Monroe County Senator Party First took office Residence
54 Webster Pam Helming Republican 2017 Canandaigua, Ontario County
55 East Rochester, Irondequoit, Mendon, Penfield, Perinton, Pittsford, Rush, northeastern part of the City of Rochester Rich Funke Republican 2015 Fairport, Monroe County
56 Brighton, Clarkson, Gates, Greece, Hamlin, Parma, northwestern part of the City of Rochester Joseph E. Robach Republican 2003 Greece, Monroe County
59 Henrietta, Wheatland Patrick M. Gallivan Republican 2011 Elma, Erie County
61 Chili, Riga, southern part of the City of Rochester Michael H. Ranzenhofer Republican 2009 Amherst, Erie County
62 Ogden, Sweden Robert Ortt Republican 2015 North Tonawanda, Niagara County
New York State Assembly
After redistricting based on the 2010 United States Census, Monroe County was split between seven state assembly districts:

District Areas of Monroe County Assemblyperson Party First took office Residence
133 Mendon, Pittsford, Riga, Rush, Wheatland Marjorie Byrnes Republican 2019 Monroe County
134 Greece, Ogden, Parma Peter Lawrence Republican 2015 Greece, Monroe County
135 East Rochester, Penfield, Perinton, Webster Mark C. Johns Republican 2011 Webster, Monroe County
136 Brighton, Irondequoit, northwest portion and easternmost tip of the City of Rochester Vacant
137 Gates, center of the City of Rochester Vacant
138 Chili, Henrietta, parts of the City of Rochester Harry B. Bronson Democratic 2011 Rochester, Monroe County
139 Clarkson, Hamlin, Sweden Stephen M. Hawley Republican 2006 Batavia, Genesee County
Monroe County is part of

The 7th Judicial District of the New York Supreme Court.
The 4th Division of the New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division
Monroe County is a home to a number of international businesses, including Eastman Kodak, Paychex, and Pictometry International, all of which make Monroe County their world headquarters. While no longer headquartered in Rochester, Xerox has its principal offices and manufacturing facilities in Monroe County (Xerox 2010 Annual Report), and Bausch and Lomb was headquartered in Rochester until it was acquired by Valeant Pharmaceuticals. Monroe County is also home to regional businesses such as Wegmans, Roberts Communications, Inc., Holding Corp., and major fashion label Hickey Freeman.

High technology
Further information: Tech Valley
Tech Valley, the technologically recognized area of eastern New York State, has spawned a western offshoot into the Rochester, Monroe County, and Finger Lakes areas of New York State. Since the 2000s, as the more established companies in Rochester downsized, the economy of Rochester and Monroe County has been redirected toward high technology, with new, smaller companies providing the seed capital necessary for business foundation. The Rochester and Monroe County area is important in the field of photographic processing and imaging as well as incubating an increasingly diverse high technology sphere encompassing STEM fields, in part the result of private startup enterprises collaborating with major academic institutions, including the University of Rochester and Cornell University. Given the high prevalence of imaging and optical science among the industry and the universities, Rochester is known as the world capital of imaging. The Institute of Optics of the University of Rochester and the Rochester Institute of Technology in nearby Henrietta both have imaging programs.

Major Employers:

Several industries occupy a major portion of the jobs located regionally, with healthcare comprising a significant portion of jobs in Monroe County. The U of R (including its numerous hospitals) is the largest employer regionally with over 27,000 workers; Rochester Regional Health (parent company of Rochester General and Unity Hospitals) is the second largest consisting of over 15,000. Wegmans is third with about 13,000 local employees.

Historical population
Census Pop. %±
1830 49,855 —
1840 64,902 30.2%
1850 87,650 35.0%
1860 100,648 14.8%
1870 117,868 17.1%
1880 144,903 22.9%
1890 189,586 30.8%
1900 217,854 14.9%
1910 283,212 30.0%
1920 352,034 24.3%
1930 423,881 20.4%
1940 438,230 3.4%
1950 487,632 11.3%
1960 586,387 20.3%
1970 711,917 21.4%
1980 702,238 ?1.4%
1990 713,968 1.7%
2000 735,343 3.0%
2010 744,344 1.2%
Est. 2019 741,770 ?0.3%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2013
As of the census of 2000, there were 735,343 people, 286,512 households, and 184,513 families residing in the county. The population density was 1,115 people per square mile (431/km2). There were 304,388 housing units at an average density of 462 per square mile (178/km2). The county's racial makeup was 79.14% White, 13.75% African American, 0.27% Native American, 2.44% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 2.44% from other races, and 1.94% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.31% of the population. 18.6% were of Italian, 15.3% German, 11.3% Irish and 8.3% English ancestry according to Census 2000. 4.64% of the population reported speaking Spanish at home, while 1.43% speak Italian.

There were 286,512 households out of which 31.80% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.40% were married couples living together, 13.40% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.60% were non-families. 28.60% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.90% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 3.08.

In the county, the population was spread out with 25.60% under the age of 18, 9.50% from 18 to 24, 29.30% from 25 to 44, 22.60% from 45 to 64, and 13.00% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 93.00 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.20 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $44,891, and the median income for a family was $55,900. Males had a median income of $41,279 versus $29,553 for females. The per capita income for the county was $22,821. About 8.20% of families and 11.20% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.50% of those under age 18 and 7.40% of those age 65 or over.

Primary and secondary education
The public school system educates the overwhelming majority of Monroe County's children. The schools operated by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester or Roman Catholic religious orders educate the next largest segment of children, although collectively, they are a distant second.

Public schools
There are some 26 public school districts that serve Monroe County, including the Rochester City School District, 10 suburban school districts in Monroe #1 BOCES, seven in Monroe #2–Orleans BOCES, and several primarily serving other counties (Avon, Byron–Bergen, Caledonia–Mumford, Holley, Wayne, Williamson and Victor central school districts).

Public school districts in 2016–2017
Name BOCES Established District population Professional staff Support staff Median teacher salary Enrollment Budget Per pupil cost
Brighton Central School District Monroe #1 1966 26450 372 293 $63580 3681 $74.0 million $18444
Brockport Central School District Monroe #2–Orleans 1927 30000 356 362 $59971 3411 $78.9 million $23128
Churchville-Chili Central School District Monroe #2–Orleans 1950 30000 350 322 $59752 3845 $82.6 million $21523
East Irondequoit Central School District Monroe #1 1956 27000 335 352 $56447 3145 $76.3 million $24257
East Rochester Union Free School District Monroe #1 1920 8200 125 91 $53829 1179 $27.4 million $23282
Fairport Central School District Monroe #1 1951 40000 645 516 $65630 5905 $123.3 million $20874
Gates Chili Central School District Monroe #2–Orleans 1956 35000 451 402 $61423 4123 $100.8 million $24459
Greece Central School District Monroe #2–Orleans 1928 96000 1127 1249 $72100 11094 $221.2 million $19941
Hilton Central School District Monroe #2–Orleans 1949 25323 421 367 $60407 4452 $80.0 million $17965
Holley Central School District Monroe #2–Orleans 1949 7774 125 87 $53366 1051 $24.4 million $23216
Honeoye Falls-Lima Central School District Monroe #1 1969 10500 219 205 $62074 2212 $48.5 million $19542
Kendall Central School District Monroe #2–Orleans 1957 3000 86 76 $53551 704 $17.4 million $22269
Penfield Central School District Monroe #1 1948 31000 438 477 $61612 4564 $93.3 million $20445
Pittsford Central School District Monroe #1 1946 33000 575 656 $67848 5685 $125.5 million $22280
Rochester City School District None 1841 209000 5786 (total) 5786 (total) $61617 30217 $864.7 million $21546
Rush-Henrietta Central School District Monroe #1 1947 46000 613 603 $63344 5247 $119.9 million $22838
Spencerport Central School District Monroe #2–Orleans 1949 23000 408 351 $62348 3584 $77.1 million $21521
Webster Central School District Monroe #1 1948 54093 801 631 $66408 8549 $163.9 million $19167
West Irondequoit Central School District Monroe #1 1953 23754 344 258 $59855 3568 $71.2 million $19916
Wheatland–Chili Central School District Monroe #2–Orleans 1955 5100 80 63 $54967 691 $17.8 million $23837
Private schools
There are three private schools that serve more than 200 students each:

Allendale Columbia School, a college preparatory school in Pittsford
The Harley School, a college preparatory school in Brighton
Mary Cariola Children's Center serving children with multiple, complex disabilities in the city
There is one small, but historically significant school: Rochester School for the Deaf in the city

Parochial schools
There are three small Judaic schools and two small Islamic schools.
There are about ten primary schools operated by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester.
There are four senior high schools (or combined junior/senior high schools) operated by or in the tradition of a Roman Catholic religious order:
School Founding religious order Location Established Grades
Aquinas Institute Basilian City of Rochester 1902 6–12
Bishop Kearney High School Christian Brothers, Sisters of Notre Dame Irondequoit 1962 6–12
McQuaid Jesuit High School Jesuits Brighton 1954 6–12
Our Lady of Mercy High School Sisters of Mercy Brighton 1928 6–12
There are more than two dozen schools operated by various sects of Christianity, two of which serve more than 200 students:
School Religious affiliation Location Established Grades
The Charles Finney School Non-denominational Christian Penfield 1992 K–12
Northstar Christian Academy Baptist Gates 1972 K–12
Colleges and universities
For colleges and universities in the Greater Rochester Area, see Rochester, New York metropolitan area § Colleges and universities.
The county is home to nine colleges and universities:

Bryant & Stratton College in Greece and Henrietta
Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School in the city
Monroe Community College in Brighton with a campus in the city
Nazareth College in Pittsford
Roberts Wesleyan College in Chili
Rochester Institute of Technology in Henrietta
St. Bernard's School of Theology and Ministry in Pittsford
St. John Fisher College in Pittsford
State University of New York at Brockport in Brockport with a campus in the city
University of Rochester in the city
Additionally, four colleges maintain satellite campuses in Monroe County:

The Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations maintains an office in the city
Empire State College maintains the Genesee Valley Learning Center in Irondequoit
Ithaca College's Department of Physical Therapy leases part of the Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School facility for teaching and research
Medaille College maintains its Rochester Campus in Brighton

Wetlands Trail in Black Creek Park
The following is a list of parks owned and maintained by Monroe County:

Abraham Lincoln Park
Arrow Park
Black Creek Park
Churchville Park
Devil's Cove Park
Durand Eastman Park
Ellison Park
Genesee Valley Park
Greece Canal Park
Highland Park
Irondequoit Bay Marine Park
Irondequoit Bay Park West
Lehigh Valley Trail Park
Mendon Ponds Park
Northampton Park
Oatka Creek Park
Ontario Beach Park
Powder Mills Park
Seneca Park
Tryon Park
Ronald Webster Park
Wetlands Park

The town, village, and city borders
Rochester (county seat)
East Rochester
Villages in New York State are incorporated municipalities located within Towns. The town in which each village is located is noted in parenthesis.

Brockport (Sweden)
Churchville (Riga)
East Rochester (Coterminous village and town)
Fairport (Perinton)
Hilton (Parma)
Honeoye Falls (Mendon)
Pittsford (Pittsford)
Scottsville (Wheatland)
Spencerport (Ogden)
Webster (Webster)
Census-designated places
Nazareth College
North Gates
Rochester Institute of Technology
St. John Fisher College
In New York State the term "Hamlet", although not defined in law, is used to describe an unincorporated community and geographic location within a town. The town in which each Hamlet is located is in parenthesis.

Genesee Junction (Chili)
Egypt (Perinton)
Adams Basin (Ogden)
Bushnell's Basin (Perinton)
Gates Center (Gates)
Garbutt (Scottsville)
Mumford (Wheatland)
Union Hill (Webster)
Mendon Center (Mendon)
Seabreeze (Irondequoit)
Summerville (Irondequoit)
Parma Center (Parma)
Riga Center (Riga)
Sweden Center (Sweden)
West Webster (Webster)
North Chili (Chili)
Clarkson Corners (Clarkson)
Clifton (Chili)
Industry (Rush)
Belcoda (Wheatland)
Coldwater (Gates)
Barnard (Greece)
Beattie Beach (Greece)
Braddock Bay (Greece)
Braddock Heights (Greece)
Elmgrove (Greece)
Grandview Heights (Greece)
Grand View Beach (Greece)
North Greece (Greece)
Ridgemont (Greece)
West Greece (Greece)
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