Home to MCB Camp Lejeune, one of the nation’s largest Marine installations, Onslow County has a strong and stable economy. Economic impact studies show that the military (MCB Camp Lejeune and MCAS New River) contributes more than $3.5 billion annually to the regional economy. The county is also home to education, manufacturing, technology, service, tourism and trade sectors. Given the continuing financial fuel from Marines and sailors stationed at MCB Camp Lejeune and MCAS New River and a great roster of local businesses, the county’s prospects remain bright.
Onslow County’s population was nearly 194,000 in 2017, and the median household income from 2012 to 2016 was $46,786,
the U.S. Census found. The median age is 27 years old.
The county seat, Jacksonville, works with partners to seek out new employment and economic opportunities for its citizens. Jacksonville Onslow Economic Development is funded in part by the city of Jacksonville and works to attract industry and economic activities, working closely with the North Carolina Department of Commerce. Additionally, JOED works to maintain industries that the area already has, and is faithful to military-related issues that affect the economy. Visit www.joednc.com for more information.
The businesses in Onslow County enjoy easy access to two separate deep-water ports (Morehead City and Wilmington) and a state-of-the-art airport (Albert J. Ellis). The county’s four-lane highways go to both ports, making trucking and transportation simple. The Albert J. Ellis Airport in Richlands, just 10 miles northwest of Jacksonville, has new passenger and executive terminals. And because the county is in Foreign Trade Zone No. 214, it can offer individuals and businesses the opportunity to import foreign goods into a duty-free zone.
MCB Camp Lejeune and MCAS New River
According to the 2017 Marine Corps Installations East economic impact report, North Carolina military bases contribute billions of dollars to state and local economies. The Marine Corps is a significant business enterprise and employer throughout the region, employing thousands of personnel across a wide range of sectors and funding dozens of military construction projects and defense contracts.
MCB Camp Lejeune is home to more than 100,000 active-duty and civilian personnel, retirees and military family members. The base contributes more than $3.1 billion each year to the local economy in payroll, contracts, construction and other services that support training and equipping Marines, sailors and Coast Guard members.
MCAS New River has approximately 16,000 active-duty and civilian personnel, retirees and military family members. The air station has an annual economic impact of more than $400 million.