Capitol Alert

California has most veterans of any state

Santiago Ortiz, 11, left, and and Spencer Tacherra, 14, both members of the Boy Scout Troop 136 keep a huge flag from touching the ground while other members line the perimeter while they walk down Capitol Mall during the Fourth Annual Veterans Day Parade on Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014 in Sacramento.
Santiago Ortiz, 11, left, and and Spencer Tacherra, 14, both members of the Boy Scout Troop 136 keep a huge flag from touching the ground while other members line the perimeter while they walk down Capitol Mall during the Fourth Annual Veterans Day Parade on Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014 in Sacramento. rpench@sacbee.com

California is home to more military veterans than any other state – 1.9 million – but, proportionately, its veteran population is one of the lowest, a new Census Bureau report reveals.

The report, issued for Veterans Day, says that the nation has 21.4 million veterans of military service.

A detailed report on California reveals that largest single group of its veterans served during the Vietnam War, although not necessarily in Vietnam, and just under 50 percent are over 65 years old.

The bureau also calculated that 6.9 percent of the state’s veterans are women, that the unemployment rate for the state’s veterans is 7.4 percent, that 12,096 are homeless, that the state has 254,873 veteran-owned businesses, and that the Veterans Administration has 101 facilities in the state.

Florida and Texas, each with 1.6 million veterans, trail California in numbers, but both have higher proportions of veterans in their populations.

At just over 6 percent of its population, California has the nation’s third lowest proportion of veterans among the states. Alaska is the highest at 14 percent, Texas is eighth lowest and Florida is 22nd highest.

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