|County of Maricopa|
The Maricopa County Courthouse and Old Phoenix City Hall, also known as the County-City Administration Building, in 2013
Location within the U.S. state of Arizona
Arizona's location within the U.S.
|Founded||February 14, 1871|
|• Total||9,224 sq mi (23,890 km2)|
|• Land||9,200 sq mi (24,000 km2)|
|• Water||24 sq mi (60 km2) 0.3%%|
| • Estimate |
|• Density||410/sq mi (160/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC−7 (Mountain)|
|Congressional districts||1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th|
Maricopa County is located in the south-central part of the U.S. state of Arizona. The U.S. Census Bureau estimated its population was 4,410,824 as of 2018, making it the state's most populous county, and the fourth-most populous in the United States, containing more than half the population of Arizona. It is more populous than 23 states. The county seat is Phoenix,the state capital and fifth-most populous city in the United States.
In the United States, a state is a constituent political entity, of which there are currently 50. Bound together in a political union, each state holds governmental jurisdiction over a separate and defined geographic territory and shares its sovereignty with the federal government. Due to this shared sovereignty, Americans are citizens both of the federal republic and of the state in which they reside. State citizenship and residency are flexible, and no government approval is required to move between states, except for persons restricted by certain types of court orders.
Arizona is a state in the southwestern region of the United States. It is also part of the Western and the Mountain states. It is the sixth largest and the 14th most populous of the 50 states. Its capital and largest city is Phoenix. Arizona shares the Four Corners region with Utah, Colorado, and New Mexico; its other neighboring states are Nevada and California to the west and the Mexican states of Sonora and Baja California to the south and southwest.
A county seat is an administrative center, seat of government, or capital city of a county or civil parish. The term is used in Canada, China, Romania, Taiwan and the United States. County towns have a similar function in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland, and historically in Jamaica.
Maricopa County is the central county of the Phoenix-Mesa-Glendale, AZ Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Phoenix is the capital and most populous city in Arizona, with 1,660,272 people. It is also the fifth most populous city in the United States, and the only state capital with a population of more than one million residents.
Mesa is a city in Maricopa County, in the U.S. state of Arizona. It is a suburb located about 20 miles (32 km) east of Phoenix in the East Valley section of the Phoenix Metropolitan Area. It is bordered by Tempe on the west, the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community on the north, Chandler and Gilbert on the south along with Queen Creek, and Apache Junction on the east.
Glendale is a city in Maricopa County, Arizona, United States, located about nine miles (14 km) northwest from Downtown Phoenix. According to the 2018 U.S. Census estimates, the population of the city is 250,702.
Maricopa County was named after the Maricopa Indians.There are five Indian reservations located in the county. The largest are the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community (east of Scottsdale) and the Gila River Indian Community (south of Chandler).
The Gila River Indian Community (GRIC) is an Indian reservation in the U.S. state of Arizona, lying adjacent to the south side of the city of Phoenix, within the Phoenix Metropolitan Area in Pinal and Maricopa counties. Gila River Indian Reservation was established in 1859, and the Gila River Indian Community formally established by Congress in 1939. The community is home for members of both the Akimel O’odham (Pima) and the Pee-Posh (Maricopa) tribes.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 9,224 square miles (23,890 km2), of which 9,200 square miles (24,000 km2)??? is land and 24 square miles (62 km2) (0.3%) is water. Maricopa County is one of the largest counties in the United States by area, with a land area greater than that of four states. From west to east, it stretches 132 miles (212 km) and 103 miles (166 km) from north to south. It is by far Arizona's most populous county, encompassing well over half of the state's residents. It is the largest county in the United States to have a capital city.
The United States Census Bureau is a principal agency of the U.S. Federal Statistical System, responsible for producing data about the American people and economy. The Census Bureau is part of the U.S. Department of Commerce and its director is appointed by the President of the United States.
La Paz County is a county in the western part of the U.S. state of Arizona. As of the 2010 census, its population was 20,489, making it the second-least populous county in Arizona. The county seat is Parker. The name of the county is the Spanish word for "the peace", and is taken from the early settlement of La Paz along the Colorado River.
Yuma County is a county in the southwestern corner of the U.S. state of Arizona. As of the 2010 census, its population was 195,751. The county seat is Yuma.
Pima County is a county in the south central region of the U.S. state of Arizona. As of the 2010 census, the population was 980,263, making it Arizona's second-most populous county. The county seat is Tucson, where nearly all of the population is centered. The county is named after the Pima Native Americans who are indigenous to this area.
Sonoran Desert National Monument is south of Goodyear and Buckeye and east of Gila Bend, Arizona. Created by Presidential proclamation on January 17, 2001, the 496,400 acres (200,886 ha) monument is managed by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management as part of the National Landscape Conservation System. The BLM already managed the lands, however under monument status, the level of protection and preservation of resources is enhanced. Sonoran Desert National Monument protects but a small portion of the Sonoran Desert, which is 120,000 square miles (311,000 km2), and extends well into California and the country of Mexico. The North Maricopa Mountains, South Maricopa Mountains and the Table Top Wildernesses protect the richest regions of desert habitat from development.
The Tonto National Forest, encompassing 2,873,200 acres, is the largest of the six national forests in Arizona and is the fifth largest national forest in the United States. The Tonto National Forest has diverse scenery, with elevations ranging from 1,400 feet in the Sonoran Desert to 7,400 feet in the ponderosa pine forests of the Mogollon Rim. The Tonto National Forest is also the most visited "urban" forest in the United States. The boundaries of the Tonto National Forest are the Phoenix metropolitan area to the south, the Mogollon Rim to the north and the San Carlos and Fort Apache Indian Reservation to the east. The Tonto is managed by the USDA Forest Service and its headquarters are in Phoenix. There are local ranger district offices in Globe, Mesa, Payson, Roosevelt, Scottsdale, and Young.
|U.S. Decennial Census |
As of the census of 2000, there were 3,072,149 people, 1,132,886 households, and 763,565 families residing in the county. The population density was 334 people per square mile (129/km²). There were 1,250,231 housing units at an average density of 136/sq mi (52/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 77.4% White, 3.7% African American, 1.9% Native American, 2.2% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 11.9% from other races, and 2.9% from two or more races. 29.5% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 19.1% reported speaking Spanish at home.
There were 1,132,886 households out of which 33.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.6% were married couples living together, 10.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.6% were non-families. 24.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.67 and the average family size was 3.21.
The population was spread out with 27.0% under the age of 18, 10.2% from 18 to 24, 31.4% from 25 to 44, 19.80% from 45 to 64, and 11.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females, there were 100.10 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.10 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $45,358, and the median income for a family was $51,827. Males had a median income of $36,858 versus $28,703 for females. The per capita income for the county was $22,251. About 8.0% of families and 11.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.4% of those under age 18 and 7.4% of those age 65 or over.
As of the 2010 census, there were 3,817,117 people, 1,411,583 households, and 932,814 families residing in the county. 414.9 inhabitants per square mile (160.2/km2). There were 1,639,279 housing units at an average density of 178.2 per square mile (68.8/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 73.0% white (58.7% non-Hispanic white), 5.0% black or African American, 3.5% Asian, 2.1% American Indian, 0.2% Pacific islander, 12.8% from other races, and 3.5% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 29.6% of the population. The largest ancestry groups were:The population density was
Of the 1,411,583 households, 35.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.8% were married couples living together, 12.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 33.9% were non-families, and 25.9% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.67 and the average family size was 3.25. The median age was 34.6 years.
The median income for a household in the county was $55,054 and the median income for a family was $65,438. Males had a median income of $45,799 versus $37,601 for females. The per capita income for the county was $27,816. About 10.0% of families and 13.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 19.8% of those under age 18 and 7.0% of those age 65 or over.
According to data provided by the United States Census Bureau in October 2015 and collected from 2009-2013, 73.72% of the population aged five years and over spoke only English at home, while 20.32% spoke Spanish, 0.56% spoke Chinese, 0.47% Vietnamese, 0.41% Tagalog, 0.37% Arabic, 0.36% German, 0.30% French, 0.25% Navajo, 0.21% Korean, 0.20% Hindi, 0.15% Italian, 0.14% Persian, 0.13% Russian, 0.13% Serbocroatian, 0.12% Telugu, 0.12% Polish, 0.11% Syriac, 0.11% Japanese, 0.11% spoke Romanian, and 0.10% spoke other Native North American languages at home.
The governing body of Maricopa County is its Board of Supervisors. The Maricopa County Board of Supervisors consists of five members chosen by popular vote within their own districts. Currently, the Board consists of four Republicans, each representing districts in the more affluent or conservative districts of the county, and one Democrat, representing the largest district. Each member serves a four-year term, with no term limits.
The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office provides court protection, administers the county jail, and patrols the unincorporated areas of the county plus incorporated towns by contract.
Maricopa County has a long history of being a Republican Party stronghold. While the city of Phoenix leans towards the Democratic Party, along with some other small areas within the county, the rest of the county tends to vote heavily Republican. Every Republican presidential candidate has carried Maricopa County since 1948. This includes the 1964 presidential run of native son Barry Goldwater, who would not have even carried his own state had it not been for a 21,000-vote margin in Maricopa County. It is currently the largest county in the country to vote Republican. Since 1964, Democrats have only kept the margin to single digits three times–in 1992, 1996, and 2016. In 2018, Democrat Krysten Sinema continued the Democratic trend of Maricopa County by carrying it on the way to her statewide victory–the first for Democrats since 1988 in both Maricopa County & Arizona as a whole.
Despite its apparent political leanings, Maricopa County voted against Proposition 107 in the 2006 election. This referendum, designed to ban gay marriage and restrict domestic partner benefits, was rejected by a 51.6–48.4% margin within the county, and statewide by a similar margin. Two years later, however, a majority of county residents voted to pass the ultimately successful state constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.
Unlike cities and towns in Arizona, counties are politically and legally subordinate to the state, and do not have charters of their own. The Board of Supervisors acts in the capacity of executive authority for the county within the statutes and powers prescribed by Arizona state law. The state legislature devotes considerable time to local matters, with limited discretion granted to the Board of Supervisors on minor ordinance and revenue collection issues. Chair of the Board is held by one member for a period of one year, and is selected by the Board members themselves through public hearing.
The election of the County Sheriff, County Attorney, County Assessor, County Treasurer, Superintendent of Schools, County Recorder, Constables, Justices of the Peace, Clerk of the Superior Court, and retention of Superior Court Judges are also determined by popular vote.
The county's dominant political figure for over two decades (from 1993 to 2017) was Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who had dubbed himself "America's Toughest Sheriff" and gained national notoriety for his flamboyant and often controversial practices and policies.
As Maricopa County is home to almost 60 percent of the state's population, it dominates Arizona's politics. Eight of the state's nine congressional districts include at least some portion of the county, and five of said districts have their population center located there. Most of the state's most prominent elected officials live in the county, as well.
|District||Name||Party||First elected||Area(s) represented|
|United States Senate|
|Class I Senator||Kyrsten Sinema||Democratic||2018||All of state|
|Class III Senator||Martha McSally||Republican||2018|
|United States House of Representatives|
|1||Tom O'Halleran||Democratic||2016||Gila River Indian Community|
|3||Raul Grijalva||Democratic||2002||Avondale, Buckeye, Phoenix|
|4||Paul Gosar||Republican||2010||Northern Maricopa County|
|5||Andy Biggs||Republican||2016||Mesa, Chandler, Gilbert|
|6||David Schweikert||Republican||2010||Phoenix, Scottsdale|
|8||Debbie Lesko||Republican||2018||West Valley|
|9||Greg Stanton||Democratic||2018||Phoenix, South Scottsdale, Tempe|
|Party||District||Name||First elected||Area(s) represented|
|Republican||District 1||Jack Sellers||2012||Chandler, Gilbert, Mesa, Phoenix, Queen Creek, Scottsdale, Sun Lakes, Tempe|
|Republican||District 2||Steve Chucri||2012||Apache Junction, Carefree, Cave Creek, Fountain Hills, Gilbert, Mesa, Paradise Valley, Phoenix, Scottsdale|
|Republican||District 3||Bill Gates||2016||Anthem, Desert Hills, New River, Paradise Valley, Phoenix|
|Republican||District 4||Clint Hickman||2014||Avondale, Aguila, Buckeye, El Mirage, Glendale, Goodyear, New River, Peoria, Sun City, Sun City West, Surprise, Wickenburg, Youngtown|
|Democratic||District 5||Steve Gallardo||2015||Avondale, Buckeye, Gila Bend, Glendale, Goodyear, Guadalupe, Phoenix, Tolleson|
|Republican||Assessor||Paul D. Petersen||2014†|
|Republican||Clerk of the Superior Court||Jeff Fine||2018†|
|Republican||County Attorney||Allister Adel||----†|
|Democratic||County Recorder||Adrian Fontes||2016|
|Republican||County School Superintendent||Steve Watson||2016|
†Member was originally appointed to the office.
The major primary commercial airport of the county is Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX).
Other airports located in the county include:
In terms of freight rail, the Union Pacific Railroad and the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad serve the county.
In terms of passenger rail, greater Phoenix is served by a light rail system. The county has no other passenger rail transport as Amtrak's Sunset Limited, which served Phoenix until June 2, 1996, has its closest stop in Maricopa in neighboring Pinal County. The train connects Maricopa to Tucson, Los Angeles, and New Orleans three times a week. However it does not stop in Phoenix itself.
The population ranking of the following table is based on the 2010 census of Maricopa County.
† county seat
|Rank||City/Town/etc.||Population (2010 Census)||Population (2017 Estimate)||Municipal type||Incorporated|
|8||Peoria (partially in Yavapai County )||154,065||168,181||City||1954|
|13||Queen Creek (partially in Pinal County )||26,361||39,184||Town||1990|
|16||Sun City West||24,535||--||CDP|
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