Black Hills Knowledge Netowork

Lawrence County - Work & Economy

Lawrence County’s Median Household Income rose from $49,360 in 2010 to $51,553 in 2015. As found by the 2015 American Community Survey, the county's total labor force was 13,543, with 515 people or 2.5 percent listed as unemployed. For an in-depth economic profile of Lawrence County, visit the South Dakota Governor's Office of Economic Development.

Gross Sales Revenue

Business in Lawrence County did over 1.13 billion dollars in gross sales in 2016, as reported by the South Dakota Department of Revenue. That sum represented 1.6 percent share of the state total. Below is a chart providing, by sector, gross sales data for Lawrence County.

Gross Domestic Product of South Dakota

In 2016, South Dakota current-dollar GDP was $48.1 billion and ranked 47th in the United States. In 2006, South Dakota GDP was $32.5 billion and ranked 48th in the United States. In 2016, the South Dakota real GDP grew 1.7 percent, and the 2015-2016 national change was 1.5 percent.

More information on Gross Domestic Product can be found here.

Tourism Tax

Lawrence County ranked 3rd in the state with $72,205,249 in real taxable tourism sales in 2016.  That amount represented 8.7 percent share of the state’s total. To see where other counties rank, see our chart on the South Dakota Dashboard.

Employment and Workforce

The largest employment industries are construction, education services, and healthcare and social assistance. Supervisor is the most common job description in Lawrence County, according to the census bureau.

Lawrence County has 11,545 total jobs, a 2.2 percent increase from the previous year, 2014. South Dakota has over 416,020 jobs and the United States over 136,491,699 but South Dakota’s total has increased by 14.3 percent since 2000, the United States has increased by 7.4 percent.

Lawrence County had a 75.1 percent proportion of adults working, less than the South Dakota average of 76.4 percent, but larger than the national average of 68.7 percent.

Income & Wages

The Lawrence County median household income for individuals over the age of 65 was $32,207 in 2015, less than both the South Dakota median of $37,896, and the United States median of $40,971.

The number of people living in poverty in Lawrence County is 3,102, approximately 12.9 percent of the total population. The state’s poverty rate is 13.7 percent as compared to the United States average of 14.7 percent.

Out of the 10,241 total households, 3,098 households, or 30.3 percent pay 30 percent or more of their income on monthly housing costs, also known as housing cost burden. South Dakota’s Housing Cost Burdened is slightly less than Lawrence County at 24.5 percent, but the United States is larger at 33.3 percent.

Agriculture & Resources

There were 312 farms in Lawrence County totaling 158,746 acres according to the 2012 U.S. Department of Agriculture Census. The average farm or ranch was 509 acres. The number of heads of cattle was over eighteen thousand in 2012, representing the largest population of livestock. Between 2007 and 2012, the number of farms devoted to agriculture decreased by 1 percent. The market value of agricultural products sold in the county rose 64 percent to $19,052,000 from $11,620,000 in 2007. Nearly 70 percent of farmland was devoted to pastureland for livestock. The amount of government payments farms received totaled $315,000, up by 174 percent since 2007. The average principal operator of a farm was 61.8 years old and was most likely male and white. Three Hispanics and 40 females were principal operators of farms. Lawrence County was ranked second in the state for vegetables, melons, potatoes, and sweet potatoes, and sixth in the state for Aquaculture.

For more information on agriculture in Lawrence County, see the county profile at the U.S. Department of Agriculture's website. Explore other relevant information at and Rural Life and Census Data at SDSU, Brookings, SD.

More Information

For more data on the economies of South Dakota and the Black Hills, please check out our interactive graphs and charts on the South Dakota Dashboard.

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