Pasco County, Florida

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Pasco County, Florida
Pasco Cty Courthouse Dade City.jpg
Pasco County Courthouse
Flag of Pasco County, Florida
Seal of Pasco County, Florida
Map of Florida highlighting Pasco County
Location in the state of Florida
Map of the United States highlighting Florida
Florida's location in the U.S.
FoundedJune 2, 1887
SeatDade City
Largest cityNew Port Richey (population)
Zephyrhills (area)
 • Total867.95 sq mi (2,248 km2)
 • Land744.85 sq mi (1,929 km2)
 • Water123.10 sq mi (319 km2), 14.18%
 • (2010)464,697
 • Density624/sq mi (240.9/km²)
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Pasco County, Florida
Pasco Cty Courthouse Dade City.jpg
Pasco County Courthouse
Flag of Pasco County, Florida
Seal of Pasco County, Florida
Map of Florida highlighting Pasco County
Location in the state of Florida
Map of the United States highlighting Florida
Florida's location in the U.S.
FoundedJune 2, 1887
SeatDade City
Largest cityNew Port Richey (population)
Zephyrhills (area)
 • Total867.95 sq mi (2,248 km2)
 • Land744.85 sq mi (1,929 km2)
 • Water123.10 sq mi (319 km2), 14.18%
 • (2010)464,697
 • Density624/sq mi (240.9/km²)

Pasco County is a county located in the U.S. state of Florida. Its 2010 population was 464,697.[1] Its county seat is Dade City[2] and its largest city is New Port Richey. Pasco, together with Hernando, Hillsborough, and Pinellas counties comprise the Tampa-St.Petersburg-Clearwater Metropolitan Statistical Area, and along with various combinations of Manatee and Sarasota counties further south, Citrus County to the north, and Polk County to the east is often referred to as the Tampa Bay Area. As of 2005, Pasco was the 38th fastest growing county in the country.[3]

The county is named for Samuel Pasco. It includes numerous parks and trails including along rivers, the Gulf of Mexico, lakes, and highway/ railroad right of ways. Several nudist resorts are located in Pasco. West Pasco includes retirement areas, commercial fishing, and suburbs of Tampa. East Pasco is transitioning from forested and agricultural areas to suburban developments. The Suncoast Highway and U.S. 275 both pass through Pasco. Pasco is one of the whitest counties in Florida.


US Senator Samuel Pasco

Pasco County was created on June 2, 1887, from the southern third of Hernando County. The same legislation also created Citrus County from the northern third of Hernando County. The county was named for Samuel Pasco, who had just been elected to the United States Senate. Dade City was named the temporary county seat until a popular vote was held in 1889, at which time voters made Dade City the permanent county seat. As early as 1917, residents of the western part of the county proposed forming a separate county or merging with Pinellas County, as Dade City was not centrally located in the county. The issue was finally resolved in the late 1970s with the construction of identical government centers in both Dade City and New Port Richey.

The earliest towns were Anclote, Blanton, Dade City, Earnestville, Fort Dade, Macon (Trilby), Lacoochee and San Antonio. Citrus was an important industry when the county was formed, although a decline followed a freeze in 1895. Several large sawmills operated in the county in the early part of the twentieth century. During the Florida land boom of the 1920s, New Port Richey became the winter home of silent screen star Thomas Meighan and golfer Gene Sarazen; Meighan attempted to bring other Hollywood figures to the city. The county has experienced significant population growth since the 1960s. The growth began along the Gulf coast but is now occurring most rapidly in areas north of Tampa.


According to the 2000 census, the county has a total area of 867.95 square miles (2,248.0 km2), of which 744.85 square miles (1,929.2 km2) (or 85.82%) is land and 123.10 square miles (318.8 km2) (or 14.18%) is water.[4]

Adjacent counties[edit]


Historical populations
Est. 2012470,3911.2%
U.S. Decennial Census[5]
2012 Estimate[6]

As of the census[7] of 2000, there were 344,765 people, 147,566 households, and 99,016 families residing in the county. The population density was 463 people per square mile (179/km²). There were 173,717 housing units at an average density of 233 per square mile (90/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 93.70% White, 2.07% Black or African American, 0.35% Native American, 0.94% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 1.52% from other races, and 1.38% from two or more races. 5.69% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 147,566 households out of which 23.50% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 54.60% were married couples living together, 8.90% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.90% were non-families. 27.30% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.90% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.77.

In the county the population was spread out with 20.20% under the age of 18, 5.80% from 18 to 24, 24.10% from 25 to 44, 23.10% from 45 to 64, and 26.80% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 45 years. For every 100 females there were 92.20 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.10 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $32,969, and the median income for a family was $39,568. Males had a median income of $30,974 versus $23,802 for females. The per capita income for the county was $18,439. About 7.60% of families and 10.70% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.20% of those under age 18 and 7.70% of those age 65 or over.

Government and politics[edit]

Though the county seat is in Dade City, duplicate county government offices and court facilities are also located in the New Port Richey area on the west side of the county.

Presidential Election Results 1960-2008
200847.5% 102,41751.1% 110,104
200444.4% 84,74954.1% 103,230
200048.7% 69,57648.1% 68,607
199649.8% 66,47536.2% 48,355
199239.1% 53,13035.1% 47,735
198843.9% 50,38555.6% 63,820
198438.1% 40,96261.9% 66,618
198038.5% 34,05456.7% 50,120
197653.7% 33,71045.1% 28,306
197227.9% 11,33071.9% 29,249
196827.4% 6,29242.4% 9,743
196451.7% 8,13548.3% 7,606
196044.8% 5,83255.2% 7,188




Incorporated municipalities of Pasco County. Numbers correspond to list at left.
  1. City of Dade City
  2. City of New Port Richey
  3. City of Port Richey
  4. City of San Antonio
  5. Town of St. Leo
  6. City of Zephyrhills

Unincorporated census designated places[edit]

County map from

Unincorporated communities not census designated places[edit]



Bus service[edit]

Pasco County Public Transportation provides bus service in West Pasco, Dade City and Zephyrhills.[9]


CSX operates three rail lines within the county. Dade City and Zephyrhills are served with a line from Plant City. Amtrak formerly provided passenger rail service to Dade City on that line, but the stop was terminated in late 2004.[10] The other two lines include the Brooksville Subdivision which runs close to US 41 and the Vitis Subdivision, which runs southeast into Lakeland.

Notable abandoned railroad lines include a former branch of the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad northwest of Trilacoochee (formerly Owensboro Junction) that became part of the Withlacoochee State Trail, a segment of the a Seaboard Air Line Railroad branch stretching from Zephyrhills to Trilacoochee, another line along the east side of US 301 that spanned from Sulphur Springs to Zephyrhills, part of the Orange Belt Railway which became the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad which ran from St. Petersburg and entered the county in what is today Trinity to Trilby (abandoned during the early-to-mid 1970s), and a branch of the Seaboard Air Line that ran through Holiday, Elfers and into New Port Richey. This line was truncated to Elfers in 1943. The tracks from Elfers and Chemical (an industrial area in the extreme southwest part of the county along the Anclote River west of Holiday) to Tarpon Springs were removed in the late 1980s leaving the western half of the county without rail service.

Major roads[edit]


Public schools in the County are operated by Pasco County Schools.

Pasco County has seen explosive growth in its student enrollment, increasing from 46,458 students in the 1999-2000 year to 65,126 in the 2007-2008 year, an increase of 18,668 or 40.2%. The projected enrollment for the 2007-2008 was 64,674, so the actual enrollment was 452 students over the projection. [1] [2] Yearly, the school district has grown 2,489 or 5.4%, which leads to building one new school a year.

High schools[edit]

Middle schools[edit]

Elementary schools[edit]

Special education centers[edit]

Private schools[edit]

Colleges / universities[edit]


The Pasco County Library Cooperative is the public library system that serves all residents of Pasco County, Florida.[11] It consists of eight branch libraries and operates on a budget of $5,730,843, a decrease of $1,723,227 since 2007. The library circulated 2,400,192 items in 2011-2012. During that same time span, the library had 906,142 people visit its eight branches, a decrease of 23 percent. This decrease is attributed to the 16 percent reduction of hours the libraries are open. The head of library services reports to the Assistant County Administrator for Public Services.[12]

Parks and recreation[edit]

Recreational areas include Hudson Beach, The New Port Richey Recreation & Aquatic Center, Veterans Memorial Park, J. Ben Harrill Recreation Complex F/K/A Holiday Rec Complex, the Jay Starkey Preserve, Werner-Boyce Salt Springs State Park, a section of the Suncoast Trail, a section of the Withlacoochee State Trail, Conner Preserve, Cypress Creek Preserve, Withlacoochee River Park, and Crews Lake Wilderness Park.[13] Kayaking, canoeing, sailing, power boating, jet skiing, and fishing are popular along the coast and large tracts are preserved from development.

Environmental lands acquired for preservation include: Aripeka Sandhills Preserve, Boy Scout Preserve, Cypress Creek Preserve, Pasco County, Jumping Gully Preserve, Pasco Palms Preserve, Tierra Del Sol Preserve and Upper Pithlachascotee River Preserve.


Pasco County, with its accommodating laws, is home to a number of Florida's nudist parks and resorts. While there is not a clothing-optional beach in the county, there are no fewer than 8 nudist parks and several clothing-optional subdivisions or mobile home communities. The oldest is Lake Como Club just north of Tampa, while a world-class resort known as Caliente, was opened several years ago. The nudist industry and its related tourism is a significant source of tax revenue for the county.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Pasco County QuickFacts from the U.S. Census Bureau
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  3. ^ Christie, Les (March 15, 2006). "100 Fastest Growing Counties". CNN. 
  4. ^ "Census 2000 U.S. Gazetteer Files: Counties". United States Census. Retrieved 2011-02-13. 
  5. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". Retrieved July 19, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Retrieved July 19, 2013. 
  7. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  8. ^ Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections
  9. ^
  10. ^ "St. Petersburg Times". Loss of Amtrak service shouldn't derail Dade City. Retrieved 2004-10-29. 
  11. ^ Pasco County Library Cooperative. (2012). 2012-2015 strategic vision,
  12. ^ Pasco County Board of County Commissioners. (2012). Annual budget Pasco County FY 2013,
  13. ^ Conner Preserve • Central Pasco County

External links[edit]

Government links/Constitutional offices[edit]

Special districts[edit]

Judicial branch[edit]

Tourism links[edit]

Other sites[edit]

Coordinates: 28°18′N 82°26′W / 28.30°N 82.44°W / 28.30; -82.44