Thursday, March 22, 2007

Last one to leave, please turn out the lights

This will be the lasting legacy of the Matt Millen of governors, Jennifer Granholm. We all know people who are leaving the state. Now the numbers are showing up in the population estimates. No jobs means people are going where there are jobs. Over 1/2 of the counties here have lost population with Wayne County leading the way.

From Booth News Service/Ann Arbor Naws

WASHINGTON -- Half of Michigan's counties lost population between 2005 and 2006, leading to a decline of about 5,200 people statewide, according to a U.S. Census Bureau report released today.

The loss is due in part to Michigan's troubled economy, population experts say: More Michigan residents went looking for new jobs in other states than came looking for work in Michigan.

"It's a rough patch, there's no question about it," said William Frey, a demographer and professor at the University of Michigan Population Studies Center. "The biggest impact is that you're not attracting new migrants to Michigan. The cumulative effect of the difficult news (about Michigan) gets planted in people's brains. It kind of creates a stigma for moving there."

Although there were 125,014 births compared with 88,987 deaths statewide between 2005 and 2006, it wasn't enough to make up for out-migration.

Michigan's decline reverses a trend of small annual population increases for most of the last six years. Between 2000 and 2006, Michigan's population grew by 157,163 people or 1.6 percent. Fifty-six of the state's 83 counties saw their populations grow during that period.

And while Michigan did see a net increase in immigrants from other countries (22,803) between 2005 and 2006, people leaving for other states resulted in a net decline of 65,123 people.

Livingston County did grow by 1.7%. That was surprising consider the number of for sale signs I've seen.


Keith Richards said...

You missed the article from the Detroit News today, same topic, different angle. The News article reported that Wayne County had one of the largest population losses in the U.S. last year, behind only a few hurricane ravaged counties on the gulf coast.

The closing of Pfizer will hurt Livingston County badly because many of those employees live here, so we can expect even worse news next year.

Michigan is in a full blown economic crisis and the only plan Granholm can come up with is to propose the largest tax increase in Michigan history. How sad. Most of the people I know have been slammed by the bad economy, including many job losses, so I've seen up close and personal how much people are hurting.

If it were not for all the suffering, it would be funny the way Granholm announces that some company will be creating a couple dozen jobs in our state in between announcements of closings where thousands of people are becoming unemployed. Granholm is doing too little too slowly and moving in the wrong direction entirely.

Communications guru said...

Wow, I haven’t heard the turn off the lights bit since the 1970s and early ‘80s when we had double-digit unemployment. We got through that, and we will get through this too.