Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Births, marriages down in Idaho

2010 Vital Statistics released by state

Express Staff Writer

Divorces and deaths went up in 2010 and marriages and births went down, according to a recent report from the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare.

The 2010 Idaho Vital Statistics report is a compilation of statistics on anything from population, teen pregnancy, abortions and leading causes of death. The report, released this spring, was conducted by the department's Bureau of Vital Records and Health Statistics.

According to the report, the number of marriages in Idaho decreased 0.1 percent from 2009 to 2010, following a 5.9 percent decrease from 2008 to 2009. Despite that drop, there was still at least one marriage conducted every day in Idaho in 2010, with the average number of marriages conducted per day coming in at 38.

Of the 13,757 marriages conducted in Idaho in 2010, 2,734 couples were nonresidents of Idaho—and of those, 1,858 couples chose to get married in Kootenai County, a stunning 68 percent. Kootenai County Recording Supervisor Todd Rickard said he wasn't sure what the cause of that high rate was, but that likely it had something to do with the county's location.

"We border Canada, Washington and Montana, so we do get a lot of people from there," he said. "It's a nice area just to get married."

Rickard said the courthouse is right across the street from a popular and generations-old wedding venue called The Hitching Post, where people come to follow in the footsteps of parents and grandparents who also got married there. Then, too, there's the fact that the county is open on Saturdays for marriage licenses and does not require a waiting period, as does the state of Washington.

"In Idaho, you are able to just walk in, provide all of the pertinent information, and you get the license," Rickard said.

The number of divorces in Idaho rose 5.3 percent from 2009 to 2010. The most common day for a divorce to be finalized was Oct. 25, 2010, when papers were signed on 60 divorces—on average, 22 divorces and annulments were conducted per day in 2010. The longest marriage that ended in divorce in 2010 was 59 years; the shortest was 10 days.


The rate of live births in 2010 was14.8 per 1,000 people—down from 15.3 in 2009. The mean age of all Idaho mothers who gave birth in 2010 was 27, while the first-time mother mean age dropped from 25 in 2009 to 24 in 2010. The ages of first-time mothers ranged from 13 to 50, though the majority of births were to mothers between the ages of 20 and 29.

About 550 more boys were born than girls. Of the boys born in 2010, 350 were named William, Samuel or Logan, with 196 more named either Ethan or Jacob. The most common name for baby girls was Olivia, followed closely by Emma, Sophia, Ava and Abigail.

In 2010, five women died either in childbirth or from complications surrounding a pregnancy.

The number of total Idaho deaths increased 3.1 percent in 2010. While all the leading causes of death in Idaho were consistent with the leading causes of death throughout the United States, cancer was the leading cause of death in Idaho while heart disease was first in the states.

Suicide was also higher in Idaho, coming in at the eighth leading cause of death in Idaho and the 10th in the United States.

Katherine Wutz:

What's in a name?

New names on the Top 25 Baby Names lists in 2010 included Zoey, Evelyn, Liam, Michael, Hunter, Luke and Elijah. While most Idahoans named their children traditionally, choosing Olivia, Elizabeth, Samantha, William, Samuel and James, some did not go the conventional route. Unique baby names included Sparkle, Sunset, Virtue, Hickory, Little Noah, Espn, Oo and Dawnlight for girls. Boys were saddled with names such as King Tiberius, Genghis, Justify, Hemi, Character, Hatchet, Jethreaux and Zytareon.

- The youngest groom was 16; the youngest bride was 15.

- The oldest groom was 96; the oldest bride was 90.

- Greatest number of previous marriages for male divorcees was 9; for female, 7.

- One 2010 divorce terminated a 59-year marriage.

- 68 percent of nonresident marriages took place in Kootenai County.

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