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Salinas Valley Community Profile

Salinas and the Salinas Valley are known as "The Salad Bowl of the World" for the production of lettuce, broccoli, mushrooms and strawberries along with numerous other crops. The climate is also ideal for the floral industry and grape vineyards planted by world-famous vintners. 

Although agriculture forms an economic base, more than 100 manufacturing firms call Salinas home. Some of the largest employers in the area include: Dole Fresh Vegetable, the County of Monterey, Household Credit Services, and Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital.

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Form of Government
Health Care
Tax Rates


Form of Government

The City Manager, who is appointed by City Council, is responsible for all City departments except the appointed City Attorney. The City Council legislates policies, enacts ordinances, approves the budget, and appoints advisory boards and commissions. The seven-member City Council includes six members, elected by district, for four-year staggered terms on a nonpartisan basis, plus the Mayor who is elected at-large and serves a term of two years. Our current City Hall was built in 1964 and an addition was constructed in 1975. Our old City Hall no longer exists, but we have some records of the building dating back to 1907.
It was demolished shortly after our current City Hall was opened in 1964.

Health Care

Salinas has extensive health and medical services with two of the County’s four hospitals located within the City – Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital and Natividad Medical Center. Salinas also offers skilled nursing and convalescent homes, as well as residential retirement facilities for seniors, and over 200 practicing physicians.


Salinas is a community of neighborhoods with a wide variety of housing options. With Victorians and the historic Spanish influence, Salinas provides renters and homebuyers
a housing assortment, from modest cottages and modern townhouses to spacious "rancheros" nestled in the oak-dotted countryside.

Newer developments provide attractive and imaginative tract homes and condominiums along side the many modern homes in well-established neighborhoods. Newcomers and longtime residents will find a neighborhood to their liking, regardless of whether they are looking for something larger to accommodate a growing family, or simply want to find smaller quarters for their retirement years.

Salinas offers approximately 39,175 housing units of which 20,881 are detached single family residences, 2,863 are attached single family residences, 3,341 two to four unit multifamily complexes, 10,833 apartment units, and 1,257 mobile homes. The residential vacancy rate is approximately 3½% at any time during the year.


The median rent for a two bedroom, one bath apartment was $756 per month as of July 2000.


The median home price was $268,000 as of October 2000. Percentage of home ownership was 43%.

Median Income

$55,600 for a family of four, US Dept of HUD 2003 statistics. 12.8% families living below poverty level, US Census Bureau 2000 Statistics.


Locale 1990 2000 2016
(CA DoF)
Salinas 108,777 143,920 161,042
Monterey County 355,660 401,762 437,178
State of California 29,760,521 33,871,648  


Racial Population Breakdown


Race %
White 59.1
Black 2.1
American Indian 0.8
Asian 7.9
Pacific Islander 0.3
Other 32



Hispanic or Latino Breakdown



Race %
Hispanic or Latino 70
Non-Hispanic or Latino 30



Population By Age



Age Group %
Below 15 years 27
15-19 8
20-44 42
45-64 15
Over 65 7



Workforce Distribution Breakdown



Industry %
Manufacturing 9.5
Trade (retail and wholesale) 21.5
Agriculture 18.0
Service and Government 51.0

US Census Bureau 2000 Statistics




Tax Rates

Sales Tax




The State of California retail sales tax in Monterey County is levied at the rate of 7.50% of which 1% is returned to the City of Salinas for general governmental purposes and ½% is returned to the County of Monterey for public safety activities. 

Transactions and Use Tax (Measure V)

On November 8, 2005, and on November 6, 2012, the voters of Salinas approved a Temporary Transactions and Use Tax at the rate of one-half of one percent (0.50%). The tax began April 1, 2006. With Measure V, the City's retail sales
tax rate is 8.00%. On December 31, 2016, the State of California's additional 0.25% retail sales tax rate sunsets, reducing the City's retail sales tax rate to 7.75%.

Property Tax

The minimum property tax rate is 1% of assessed valuation. The bonded indebtedness of schools and other taxing agencies may be added to the base tax rate depending on the location of specific parcels of property.


Salinas’ weather is influenced by our near proximity to Monterey Bay. The morning fog is generally cleared by afternoon breezes. The average temperature is 68.2 degrees, with summer temperatures in the 70’s which dips at night into the 50’s. Winter temperatures are generally in the low 60’s, dropping at night into the middle 30’s. Average rainfall is 14.4", usually occurring in winter and early spring.